The Sixers own the No. 3 pick in the 2015 NBA Draft. Last year, they selected Joel Embiid with the No. 3 pick, and Elfrid Payton at No. 10. Embiid didn’t play at all in 2014-15 and his status for 2015-16 is unclear, and Philly flipped Payton to the Magic for the rights to Dario Saric and a future first-rounder. Saric stayed overseas last year, and according to a new report, he won’t play for Philadelphia in 2015-16 either. And he could stay in Turkey until the 2017-18, in fact.
From Chad Ford of ESPN:
Croatian forward Dario Saric, the 12th overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft, won’t be playing for the Philadelphia 76ers next season, his agent Jeff Schwartz told ESPN.
Saric is under a three-year contract with Turkish powerhouse Anadolu Efes. The Sixers reportedly have attempted to negotiate a buyout over the past month, but Saric’s buyout is too expensive to make the move practical, according to sources.
The Sixers drafted Saric knowing this might be the case. Saric agreed to the deal with Efes just three days before the draft last year.
The deal with Efes caused Saric’s stock to fall a little — he was projected as a top-10 pick before the draft.
Saric, 21, has a player option on his contract that will technically allow him to come to the NBA for the 2016-17 season. However, there will be a big incentive for him to stay in Turkey for a third year and wait until the 2017-18 season to play in the NBA.