NBA Trade Rumors circle Philadelphia 76ersJahlil Okafor. Should Toronto Raptors watch idly, or should team pursue the Duke center. Not only to prevent his appearance on rival roster, but to improve their own team’s chances this year?
Philadelphia 76ers Jahlil Okafor is just waiting for some team to take a chance on him. And he deserves the chance. You see, the 76ers have center Joel Embiid, and Embiid is breaking the mold and the hype by outplaying even the loftiest of expectations.
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And that’s a good thing for the Philadelphia 76ers. But oh how tough is this for Jahlil Okafor.
To be fair, this is not Jahlil Okafor’s doing. It was a crazy set of circumstances which had Jahlil Okafor as the top prospect on the 2015 NBA Draft board when the Philadelphia 76ers chose. It was even crazier that weeks earlier, the team learned that center Joel Embiid required another surgery on his foot, would be out for a minimum of another season, and that Nerlens Noel has already spent a summer training as a power forward.
A comedy of errors.
Where It Leaves Us
We are closing in on the NBA Trade Deadline, and the Cleveland Cavaliers have already gone the trade route by picking up Kyle Kover from the Atlanta Hawks. Right now, the Toronto Raptors know their window is open for only a short time. And so, they most now, not tomorrow. Point guard Kyle Lowry‘s contract expires in 2018, if he retains his option for 2017-2018.
And while this is a manufactured rumor, it caught fire to the point it was certainly noted by both teams.
While the proposed trade clears on salary, the move makes little sense for the Philadelphia 76ers. Joseph, while young, is a late 1st rounder from 2011. In 2016, Joseph’s development seems… stunted. And so, the third pick of the 2015 draft for a 29th pick of the 2011 draft plus what will likely be a 24-27th pick of the 2017 NBA Draft seems… discounted.
But the idea is sound on two fronts. It places a scorer on the bench of the Raptors just in time to ramp up for the playoff run. And perhaps more importantly, it denies the same talent landing on a rival’s roster.
What is that worth?
We know that the Toronto Raptors have had little interest in shedding Terrance Ross. The team needs quality depth, and Ross is the top of the bench right now. So let’s change this up. Toronto picks up Jahlil Okafor and center/power forward Richaun Holmes, and the Philadelphia 76ers get Jakob Poetl, the 2017 first round pick of the Los Angeles Clippers, and the 2018 first round pick of the Toronto Raptors.
Raptors get Center Jahlil Okafor, Center/Power Forward Richaun Holmes
76ers get C Jakob Poetl, 2017 first round pick (via LA Clippers) 2018 First round pick
That immediately places two solid players on the Raptors bench.