Despite failing in their pursuit of a big name during the 2018 NBA offseason, the Philadelphia 76ers didn’t give up and remained hopeful that they could land a legitimate NBA superstar on the trade market. On November 12, the Sixers got an early Christmas gift when they acquired Jimmy Butler from the Minnesota Timberwolves.
The arrival of Jimmy Butler has undeniably improved the 76ers’ performance on both ends of the floor and legitimized their chance of contending for the NBA championship in the 2018-19 NBA season. However, it seems like the Sixers are not yet done in upgrading their roster. They still have a plethora of trade assets to acquire another superstar that is currently available on the trading block.
According to Dan Favale of Bleacher Report, one of the potential trade targets for the 76ers is Bradley Beal of the Washington Wizards. To acquire Beal, Favale suggested that the Sixers could engage in a three-team trade with the Wizards and the Phoenix Suns. In the proposed trade scenario, the Sixers would acquire Beal and Kelly Oubre, Jr., the Suns get Markelle Fultz and Thomas Bryant, and the Wizards will receive Wilson Chandler, Josh Jackson, Elie Okobo, Zhaire Smith, a 2019 first-round pick, and a 2019 second-round pick. The deal works on ESPN‘s NBA Trade Machine.
The potential acquisition of Bradley Beal will cement the 76ers’ status as the No. 1 team in the Eastern Conference. Aside from being a reliable scoring option, Beal will give the Sixers a player with a good reputation from beyond the arc which will make it easier for Ben Simmons and Jimmy Butler to penetrate the opposing team’s defense. This season, the 25-year-old shooting guard is averaging 21.8 points, 4.4 rebounds, 4.4 assists, 1.2 blocks, and 1.0 steal on 46.6 percent shooting from the field, and 33.3 percent shooting from beyond the arc.
The deal will not only be beneficial for the 76ers but also for the Suns and the Wizards. As Favale noted, trading Bradley Beal means that the Wizards are finally ready to take a different route, and there is also a strong possibility that they will try to move John Wall before the February NBA trade deadline. Acquiring Josh Jackson, Elie Okobo, and Zhaire Smith, together with future first-round picks, will help the Wizards speed up the rebuilding process.
“The Wizards won’t trade Beal if they aren’t prepared to start over. However, picking up Josh Jackson, Elie Okbo, Zhaire Smith and a few picks would restock their asset cupboard. They should not be scared away by Jackson’s struggles or by the prospect of Smith’s missing the entire season. They wouldn’t be playing for this season, even if they don’t move Wall. This haul would get them within $500,000 of ducking the tax and adequately arm them for the coming years.”
Meanwhile, the suggested trade will enable the Suns to address their major problem at the point guard position. Starting a new journey on a different team could help Markelle Fultz regain his confidence and prove that he deserves to be selected as the No. 1 overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft. Fultz may be considered as the odd man in Philadelphia, but in Phoenix, he could be the player who could help the Suns become a significant team in the league once again.