Months ago, it would be hard to imagine Joel Embiid and the Philadelphia 76ers parting ways in the 2020 offseason. However, with the Sixers currently on the verge of being eliminated in the first round of the Eastern Conference Playoffs, it is now becoming a possibility that Embiid could demand a trade this fall. Once he becomes officially available on the trading block, several teams in dire need of a frontcourt boost and additional star power are expected to express strong interest in acquiring Embiid from the Sixers, including the Golden State Warriors.
Suffering another huge disappointment this season, the Warriors have started making preparations to bring home the Larry O’Brien Trophy next year. Aside from making sure that their core of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green will be back in perfect shape, they are also likely targeting their fourth superstar this fall. If drama starts to build around Philadelphia in the 2020 offseason, Dijo Songco of ClutchPoints suggested that the Warriors should take “full advantage” of the situation and send the No. 2 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft to the Sixers to get Embiid.
“The tandem of Embiid and Ben Simmons hasn’t quite worked out as well as they’d want to for Philadelphia so a possibility to grab a young prospect in this year’s draft should definitely be worth a look. This is something the Warriors would want to take full advantage. Though a small-ball lineup with Draymond Green playing the five spot has worked marvelously for Golden State, the potential of adding a high-caliber center to anchor their offense and defense would be add an interesting dimension to the new-look Warriors.”
Embiid would undeniably be an incredible addition to the Warriors, giving them an All-Star caliber center who can knock down shots from beyond the arc. This season, he’s establishing an incredible performance on both ends of the floor, averaging 23.0 points, 11.6 rebounds, 3.0 assists, and 1.3 blocks while shooting 47.7 percent from the field and 33.1 percent from the three-point range, per ESPN. His arrival in the Bay Area would give them a better matchup against powerhouse teams with dominant big men like Anthony Davis of the Los Angeles Lakers and Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks.
However, though the Sixers would be left with no choice but to move him if he demands a trade, it will likely take more than the No. 2 pick for the Warriors to convince them to send their best player. In a potential trade negotiation, Philadelphia would likely demand the inclusion of Thompson and the Minnesota Timberwolves’ 2021 first-rounder in the Warriors’ package for Embiid.