NBA

Should the Philadelphia 76ers make this trade?

Buddy Hield in action for the Sacramento Kings

Buddy Hield and Harrison Barnes for Tobias Harris, Matisse Thybulle and Furkan Korkmaz. Who says no?

Last month the Philadelphia 76ers hired Doc Rivers as their new coach. A move that has Philly fans extremely excited. This week they look set to appoint Daryl Morey as their new President of Basketball Operations. It looks like another great appointment for a team full of young stars. The former Rockets general manager comes with a big reputation. He makes big moves. Often, these big moves pay off. The NBA world is full of speculation on Philadelphia’s first action with Morey at the helm. Could this trade be it?

The Philadelphia 76ers problem

The 76ers have had two big problems for several years. A poor coach and an incompetent front office. This month the franchise has seen a massive overhaul fixing these two problems. They now have one remaining problem to solve.

Can Simmons and Embiid play together?

This question is asked by pundits and fans over and over and over again. Usually the answer is, no they cannot.

This is the wrong answer.

The two young stars have played three full seasons together and have finished 3rd, 3rd and 6th in the Eastern Conference. Crucially they have only played in two playoff seasons together with Simmons being injured for this year’s disappointing first round exit. In 2018 the 76ers were eliminated in the conference semi-finals by the Celtics in five games. However, this was the young duos first season playing together. In 2019 they again got eliminated in the conference semi-finals by the eventual champions, the Toronto Raptors. The 76ers fell victim to Kawhi Leonard’s astonishing buzzer beater in game 7 in an incredibly tight series. The young Philly team in 2019 were legitimate championship contenders in just Embiid and Simmons second season together. The all-star duo can be successful together, they just need the right pieces around them.

Tobias Harris, Philadelphia 76ers
Tobias Harris in action for the Philadelphia 76ers. Credit- Bleacher Report

What do the Philadelphia 76ers need?

Shooting.

The 76ers have two of the most exciting talents in the game with Simmons and Embiid. They just need to surround them with the right supporting cast. Last year Elton Brand tried to do just that, acquiring Jason Richardson, Tobias Harris and Al Horford. This backfired horribly and led to the championship calibre team from 2018/2019 regressing significantly. Whilst Richardson, Harris and Horford are all good NBA players, they have not been the right fit for the 76ers around Embiid and Simmons. Morey is going to shop this trade window, it’s inevitable.

The trade

The 76ers trade Tobias Harris, Matisse Thybulle and Furkan Korkmaz for Buddy Hield and Harrison Barnes. This trade makes sense for both teams. The 76ers gain valuable shooting with Hield, one of the best from deep in the league, as well as a solid NBA player in Barnes who possesses valuable championship winning experience. The Kings also walk away from the trade happy receiving league veteran Harris who instantly improves their team and could gel well with young guns De’Aaron Fox and Marvin Bagley III. The Kings would also pick up the promising Thybulle, a defensive specialist as well as much needed depth in Korkmaz. Most importantly for the Kings, they get value for Hield who made it clear that he wanted to leave Sacramento.

Harrison Barnes in action for the Sacramento Kings.
Harrison Barnes in action for the Sacramento Kings. Credit- CBS Sports

The perfect fit for Philly

Buddy Hield is one of the best shooters in the league, he is exactly what the 76ers need. This year’s three-point contest winner, Hield entered the league late in 2016 as a 23-year-old after spending four years at Oklahoma. Throughout his NBA career Hield has shot 41% from three on a massive 6.7 attempts per game. Hield would thrive in this talented Philly team benefitting from more spacing and less defensive attention than when he played in Sacramento. The Bahamian shooting guard is on the brink of becoming an all-star talent and playing with Simmons and Embiid could help him to achieve it.

Harrison Barnes also helps to improve the 76ers. The forward was a starter for the 2015 championship winning Warriors and brings much needed experience and depth to Philadelphia. Barnes could start at power forward or come off the bench in a 6th man role for the 76ers. He is a consistent scorer and a good three-point shooter, a valuable role player for a contending team.

Benefits for the Kings

This trade would be an exciting prospect for the Kings. Tobias Harris is a respected forward who can put up 30 on any given night and adds solid defence to a Sacramento side crying out for it. In this stage of his career, he is a consistent 20ppg scorer who is aiming to break into the all-star game. Harris would be a good fit in Sacramento with exciting young guard De’Aaron Fox and his experience would benefit the young Kings roster. Acquiring a player of Harris’s calibre instantly improves the struggling Sacramento.

Matisse Thybulle is an intriguing young talent. It is not often a young player stands out for their defence but Thybulle does just that. He is an elite defender already despite having just one season under his belt in the league. However, his offensive skill set is limited. He can’t create his own shot, lacks playmaking ability and is an average catch and shoot player. But his defence makes up for his offensive shortcomings and it is a valuable commodity that many teams, including the Kings, would benefit from.

Furkan Korkmaz would be included in the trade to sweeten the deal for Sacramento. The 23-year-old is a sharpshooter coming off his best season to date in the league, averaging 10ppg and 40% from three. Korkmaz would add depth to the Kings and is a good scoring option coming off the bench.

Matisse Thybulle in action for the Philadelphia 76ers.
Matisse Thybulle in action for the Philadelphia 76ers. Credit- NY Times

Conclusion

This trade is a win-win. It improves both teams going into the new season. The 76ers receive much needed shooting and two players that should slot into their system nicely. It turns them into a championship contending team.

For the Kings, they improve their starting line-up with the addition of Harris, as well as gaining two young talents in Thybulle and Korkmaz that should develop into very useful options for them.

This trade is one of the best available on the market for the 76ers, without giving up one of either Simmons or Embiid. With Daryl Morey at the helm of their front office, it will be an interesting few months in Philadelphia.

All trades viable at time of writing according to https://tradenba.com/trade-machine

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