Sixers decline Jahlil Okafor's fourth-year option

Jonathan Hernandez
November 2, 2017

After spending the past year attempting to trade him, the Philadelphia 76ers ultimately declined their team option on Jahlil Okafor for the 2018-19 National Basketball Association season. The 76ers declined his fourth-year option on Tuesday, which did not make the 21-year-old very happy.

Okafor had a solid start in his first season in the league, averaging 17.5 points and 7.0 rebounds per game, while being named to the league's All-Rookie team, before a knee injury cut his season short. Okafor has barely played since the 76ers almost traded him at last year's deadline before the deal came apart, making for an awkward reunion.

"He said that he felt that if he bought me out, another team would be getting me for free", Okafor said. That's why the guys have been out there on social media, but I've just kind of been in the dark. I'm just anxious about my career. The 76ers just need to find the team willing to take the risk and add the former Duke standout.

Okafor has been the odd man out in Philly for a while now, and it only seemed like a matter of time before the Sixers moved him.

Last week, head coach Brett Brown told reporters that Okafor is not in the teams' rotation as Amir Johnson has been and will be getting the back-up center minutes. "I had a talk with [team president] Bryan [Colangelo] yesterday, just because I want to play". I know a buyout is one of the options where I get an opportunity to play elsewhere and to get on the court. "But that's where we stand today because you waited so long to trade me".

Not surprisingly, Philadelphia has had Okafor on the trade block for the past two seasons.

Okafor said he would like the 76ers to trade him or buy him out of his contract, reports NBC Sports Philadelphia's Jessica Camerato.

Last season, he found himself in a logjam at center, with the emergence of Embiid as a burgeoning superstar and both Holmes and Nerlens Noel on the roster (though Noel would eventually be traded).

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