The Philadelphia 76ers gave veteran center Al Horford a four-year, $109 million contract in the 2019 NBA free agency with the hope that adding him to the core of Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, and Tobias Harris would boost their chances of fully dominating the Eastern Conference and winning a championship title this year. Unfortunately, since the current season started, Horford is noticeably having a hard time making himself fit in coach Brett Brown’s system and struggling to coexist with Embiid in the Sixers’ frontcourt.
Though the February trade deadline passed with Horford still on their roster, rumors are circulating that the Sixers could explore trading the veteran center this offseason. According to Collin Loring of Fansided’s Hoops Habit, one of the teams that could express interest in acquiring Horford from the Sixers is the Brooklyn Nets.
“In the system of old, under previous head coach Kenny Atkinson, there’d likely be suspicions about his fit. But now, as the Nets begin to start anew with a new head coach, there’s a real opportunity. The biggest question mark for Brooklyn is where he left things with Irving, whose season with the Boston Celtics wasn’t shy of distractions off the floor and in the locker room. But right now, it’s hard to see the 76ers turning down a package centered around [Caris] LeVert and [Jarrett] Allen.”
Horford may not fit the description of a legitimate superstar that the Nets have been eyeing to add to their roster, but his potential arrival in Brooklyn would still allow them to create their own “Big Three” with Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant. Though he’s currently on the wrong side of 30, Horford remains a very reliable contributor on both ends of the floor.
This season, he is averaging 12.0 points, 6.9 rebounds, and 4.1 assists, while shooting 44.2 percent from the field and 33.7 percent from beyond the arc. With the years he spent with Irving in Boston, Horford isn’t expected to have a hard time making himself comfortable in Brooklyn.
However, despite what he can contribute to the Nets, it still remains a big question mark if Horford is worth giving up a trade package including Jarrett Allen and Caris LeVert. Allen and LeVert have shown huge potential since entering the NBA, and they played a major role in helping the Nets return to the playoffs last season. If they are really willing to trade Allen and LeVert, the Nets are better off targeting other players who are expected to be available on the trade market this summer, including Bradley Beal of the Washington Wizards, CJ McCollum of the Portland Trail Blazers, Kevin Love of the Cleveland Cavaliers, and Buddy Hield of the Sacramento Kings.