Trusting “The Process” finally paid off this year for the Philadelphia 76ers as they managed to return to the playoffs after five years of falling short. Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons showed their ability to make the Sixers a contender in the Eastern Conference, but in order to win an NBA championship title, they definitely need to add a proven superstar to their team. Should the Sixers trade for Kawhi Leonard?
According to Ryan Phillips of The Big Lead, the Sixers are in a strong position to make some “big-boy moves” in the upcoming offseason. Adding a superstar who could complete “The Process” will make Philly a more dangerous team and could help them rule the East for years to come. In the past months, LeBron James emerged as one of the potential targets, but Phillips believes Kawhi Leonard is a “better fit” for the Sixers.
Multiple signs are pointing toward Leonard and the San Antonio Spurs parting ways this summer. However, Sixers fans should expect the Spurs’ asking price to be expensive. As Phillips proposed, the Sixers will need to sacrifice Markelle Fultz, Dario Saric, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, Jerryd Bayless, and their own 2018 first-round pick to the Spurs for Leonard. The deal works on the ESPN‘s NBA Trade Machine.
The suggested trade is a no-brainer for the Spurs. Trading a disgruntled superstar for young and promising players like Markelle Fultz and Dario Saric will help them speed up the rebuilding process while remaining competitive in the Western Conference. Saric could replace Kawhi Leonard on the wing while Fultz could serve as the Spurs’ new starting point guard. Fultz and Dejounte Murray could become the next version of Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili, who helped the Spurs win multiple NBA championship titles and recently set a record for most playoff wins by a duo, per NBA.com.
Meanwhile, the Sixers will be acquiring an experienced superstar who can complete their “Big Three” with Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid. When healthy, Kawhi Leonard will boost the Sixers on both ends of the floor. Trading Fultz and Saric is undeniably a tough decision, but Phillips believes it will be worth it for the Sixers. He also thinks Fultz is an “awkward fit” in Philadelphia, especially with how Simmons played this season.
As of now, the Sixers are focused in the ongoing Eastern Conference Playoffs, leading 3-1 in the first round against the Miami Heat. Rumors swirling around Philadelphia are expected to heat up when the season is finally over.