NBA Rumors: Jimmy Butler For Markelle Fultz Trade ‘Legitimizes’ Sixers’ Superteam Potential, Per ‘The Ringer’
The Philadelphia 76ers are emerging as one of the favorite NBA teams to fully dominate the LeBron James-less Eastern Conference in the upcoming 2018-19 NBA season. Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid continue to show massive improvement in their game, and as of now, there is no doubt that they are taking the right path to stardom. However, in order to have a legitimate chance of contending for the NBA championship title, the Sixers will likely need to add another superstar on their roster.
One of their potential trade targets is Jimmy Butler of the Minnesota Timberwolves. Since the drama in Minnesota started — when Butler made it crystal clear that he was wanting to be traded away — the Sixers were one of the NBA teams who expressed interest in trading for Butler. However, the initial trade negotiation between the Sixers and the Timberwolves didn’t go well — as Minnesota reportedly asked for Ben Simmons.
Haley O’Shaughnessy of The Ringer believes that the Sixers and the Timberwolves can still continue their trade discussion involving Jimmy Butler. Instead of Ben Simmons, O’Shaughnessy suggested that the Sixers could offer a trade package centered on Markelle Fultz to Minnesota for their disgruntled superstar.
“It’d be a shame for Fultz to go through the Sixers initiation of sitting out a year only to be traded, especially considering he’s just remembered how to shoot a jumper. (Allegedly.) Putting Butler into a lineup with Simmons and Joel Embiid legitimizes Philadelphia’s superteam potential right away. Whoever trades for Butler may get him for only a year; that might be all the Sixers need. Yanking Fultz out of the Process and possibly ending up with nothing in return after this season is a hard sell. But one player is proven, and the other is a toss-up.”
As The Ringer noted, pairing Jimmy Butler with Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid will legitimize the Sixers’ superteam potential. The 29-year-old small forward will not only give them a very reliable option on the offensive end of the floor, but he will also give them a player who can be tasked to defend the opposing team’s best player. In 59 games he played with the Timberwolves last season, Butler averaged 22.2 points, 5.3 rebounds, 4.9 assists, and 2.0 steals on 47.4 percent shooting from the field and 35.0 percent from beyond the arc.
With Ben Simmons running the point, the Sixers won’t mind trading Markelle Fultz for Jimmy Butler. Fultz will undeniably be an incredible addition to the Timberwolves, since he fits with the timeline of Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins. In a potential deal with the Sixers, the Timberwolves could also demand for Robert Covington to fill the hole left by Butler in the wing.