After trades, Wizards face 76ers

PHILADELPHIA — With the All-Star break behind them, the Washington Wizards and Philadelphia 76ers resume their seasons Friday in Philadelphia, having made significant changes to their rosters in advance of Thursday’s trade deadline.

The Wizards, whose 34-21 record is third-best in the Eastern Conference, bolstered their anemic bench by acquiring forwards Bojan Bogdanovic and Chris McCullough from the Brooklyn Nets in exchange for guard Marcus Thornton, forward Andrew Nicholson and a first-round draft pick.

The 76ers (21-35) dealt forward Ersan Ilyasova to the Atlanta Hawks and center/forward Nerlens Noel to the Dallas Mavericks

The Ilyasova trade netted injured center Tiago Splitter, a 2017 second-round pick and the option to swap 2017 second-rounders. Philadelphia received center Andrew Bogut, forward Justin Anderson and a first-round pick for Noel, though the first-rounder is top-18 protected. If it does not convey, the Sixers will instead receive a pair of second-round choices.

The Sixers also announced Thursday that rookie center Joel Embiid, their top scorer (20.2), rebounder (7.8) and shot-blocker (2.5), will miss the next four games while his injured left knee continues to heal.

Embiid, who suffered a bone bruise and small meniscus tear in the knee when he landed awkwardly after dunking against the Portland Trail Blazers on Jan. 20, sat out the last 11 games before the break, and 14 of 15. His only appearance in that stretch came in a nationally televised game against the Houston Rockets on Jan. 27.

The Wizards lost eight of their first 10 games of the season but have been on a tear ever since. They won their last four games before the break, and 11 of 12.

While their starters have been effective, their bench has not. To date Washington’s subs are averaging 23.4 points in 14.3 minutes a game, which ranks 29th in the league.

Bogdanovic should help. The third-year forward scored at a 14.2 point-per-game clip as a starter for the Nets, while shooting 44 percent from the floor and 35.7 percent from 3-point range.

“Bojan is a very good shooter and a talented overall scorer whose versatility gives us an added dimension as we gear up for the stretch run,” Washington general manager Ernie Grunfeld said. “He is a proven starter that will provide us an added boost off the bench and allow us to be creative with our lineups.”

The 6-foot-11 McCullough appeared in 14 games for Brooklyn and averaged 2.5 points while spending most of his second season in the D-League.

It is not known if the Sixers will retain Bogut or Splitter, both 32. Splitter has yet to play this season because of hip and calf injuries, and while the Hawks have said he was expected to be back at some point, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution recently reported that his return is “not imminent.”

Bogut appeared in 26 games for Dallas, averaging 3.0 points and 8.3 rebounds. Most recently he was bothered by a bad calf and sat out eight games. He returned for the final game before the break, collecting four points and eight boards in a loss to Detroit.

Embiid, meanwhile, practiced Wednesday and Thursday, but reported some swelling in his knee.

“I feel great. I want to play. If it was my decision, I’d be playing,” he told reporters Wednesday, according to CSNPhilly.com. “I want to play, but those (medical) guys, they know what they’re doing. You’ve just got to trust the process.”