The NBA Trade Deadline (February 8th) is exactly 1 month away. Philadelphia is in the position to make a push for the playoffs but are teeter tottering in and out. To make this young team more consistent when it comes to winning and closing out games, I believe they must add talent/depth to the roster, especially if they want to lock up a playoff birth.
This Sixers team ranks:
1st in Rebounds (47.8)
6th in Points (108.6)
3rd in Assists (26.2)
When viewing those rankings you would expect more than a .500 record. So what’s the problem? Well, along with those comforting statistics the Sixers have been brutal in other areas of the game.
30th in Turnovers (17.3)
17th in 3pt% (35.8%)
22nd in Points Allowed (107.9)
Of course you could expect these struggles with such a young team, but like I mentioned before if Philadelphia wants to make a legit run at the Playoffs they must mask these weaknesses. Below are some players that I think could ultimately help the Sixers greatly. None of these trade targets would be considered ‘blockbusters’ but would be very effective nonetheless.
2017 statistics: 21.9ppg 2.6rpg 4.9apg (44.6% fg 40.6 3pt%)
Bring Lou back home!
Since Williams left the Sixers in 2012 he has continued to be a threat on the offensive side of the ball. The now 31yr old earned 6th Man of the Year honors in 2014-15 and has constantly been in the running for the award every season. Lou’s scoring ability and fire off the bench is something the Sixers drastically need as blowing 2nd half leads has become way too common when Simmons and Embiid are on the bench.
2017 statistics: 14.1ppg 2.8rpg 3.1apg (44.6% fg 33.6% 3pt)
Clarkson has been overlooked his entire career. 2 star recruit out of High School, 2nd round pick out of College. Despite this the 25yr old was named to the All-Rookie team in 2014 and has proven to be a threat offensively. With the ability to play both the PG/SG positions, plus his youth and reasonable contract, Clarkson could fit right in on this young Philadelphia team.
2017 statistics: 14.8ppg 5.0rpg 4.1apg (44.4% fg 36.8% 3pt)
Just like the other 2 mentioned, Barton possesses a very skilled offensive ability. The 27yr old has been averaging at least 13ppg off the bench for the past 3 seasons. Barton could make for a viable option to fill in for Redick down the road if he and the Sixers can’t come to a new agreement. Until then he’d serve as a top option off the bench like he has been providing Denver with.
2017 statistics: 16.8ppg 2.7rpg 2.0apg (40.8% fg 39.6% 3pt)
Before Donovan Mitchell blew up onto the scene, a lot of people were talking about the breakout seasons of former 1st rd pick, Rodney Hood. The 6-7ft SG possesses elite height for his position along with effectiveness from behind the arc. Pairing him with Simmons or simply using him as a bench piece could flip the script for the 2017-18 Sixers when it comes to the 3rd and 4th quarters of games.
2017 statistics: 19.7ppg 5.1rpg 4.7apg (47.1% fg 41.6% 3pt)
The development of Tyreke Evans’ shooting ability has been truly spectacular. Entering the league similar to Simmons in a way (oversized Guard with an inability to shoot from outside) Evans has suddenly become a threat from deep. Enjoying probably his best season individually on a Memphis team that is 15 games under .500, Evans should make for a viable trade candidate.
Philadelphia could use Evans in a variety of ways. For instance you can place him next to Simmons in the starting lineup at SG, let him run the second unit as the PG, or play off ball with the bench and let Fultz run things. I can see all of these scenarios being positive for the Sixers.
Jordan is the founder of Sports Are Philly and a current student at Misericordia University.
You can follow him on Twitter @darealjlaw.