Sixers Trade Proposal Ditches Tobias Harris in 3-Team Blockbuster

Tobias Harris Philadelphia 76ers

Getty Tobias Harris #12 and James Harden #1 of the Philadelphia 76ers.

Just one month ago, an eight-game win streak for the Philadelphia 76ers would have been unthinkable. Then again, so would a similar streak from the New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets. Yet that’s precisely what the month of December has yielded for all three Atlantic Division teams. The three teams have gone a combined 26-7 in the year’s final month, with each enjoying significant win streaks during that span.

But could two of those teams find a trade partner in one another? According to Jack Simone of Heavy Sports, the answer is a resounding yes. In a three-team blockbuster between the Sixers, Knicks and Chicago Bulls, the Sixers reap the minor benefits of a Bulls midseason blowup.

Here’s what Simone put together:

Knicks receive: Zach LaVine, Montrezl Harrell

Bulls receive: Tobias Harris, Obi Toppin, Immanuel Quickley, 2023 1st-round pick (from NYK, via DAL), 2024 1st-round pick (via NYK), 2028 1st-round pick (Top-5 Protected via NYK), 2027 2nd-round pick (via PHI), 2029 2nd-round pick (via PHI)

76ers receive: Evan Fournier, Cam Reddish, Alex Caruso

Though LaVine is the unquestioned gem of the trade, the Sixers make out fairly well in landing Caruso, a player the team has been linked to recently.

Sixers a Team ‘to Watch’ in Caruso Sweepstakes

With Philadelphia looking like the contender many thought they’d be at the start of the season, the team should be scouring the market for a player to bolster its title chances. And according to Sean Deveney of Heavy Sports, that player might just be Chicago Bulls guard Alex Caruso.

“The guy to watch is [Alex] Caruso,” one Eastern Conference GM told Deveney. “If [Chicago] can get some draft capital back for Caruso, and maybe a player, that would suit them. Teams like Phoenix or Miami, both would be in a position to make a trade like that. Even the Warriors, they could send out a young guy, a guy like [James] Wiseman to get into win-now mode.

“Philadelphia, same thing, they could offer some of their young guys—Matisse Thybulle, Shake [Milton] and add another guy to make the salaries work. The Lakers certainly would like to have him back if they had the young guys to do it.”

It might sound weird framing Caruso trade interest as a “sweepstakes” given his meager $9 million salary and minor stature in the league, but don’t be fooled: Caruso is a baller.

The former Los Angeles Lakers guard is a legitimate two-way threat, posting an above-average 58.1% true shooting rate and a defensive box plus/minus that ranks second in the entire NBA (3.1). Adding Caruso to the Sixers gives Philadelphia yet another disruptor to bring off the bench, which has worked gangbusters in the form of De’Anthony Melton so far.

In Fournier, the Sixers get a decently priced two-guard whose $18 million contract becomes and an expiring one next season. And why not take a flier on Reddish, a former blue-chip high school recruit who has largely failed to live up to his lottery draft pick status?

And if the Knicks sound like a familiar trade partner, it’s because they are.

The Knicks Have Kicked Around a Tobias Harris Trade

According to Ian Begley of SNY, the Knicks recently tossed around the idea of moving for Harris.

“The Knicks at least talked internally about the idea of acquiring Tobias Harris via trade before their winning streak started,” Begley said. “Obviously, Harris having a nice game against the Knicks on Christmas Day, Tom Thibodeau spoke highly of him before the game, so that’s just one name to keep an eye on. … I know that he does have some fans in the organization.”

Given Harris’ recent play, he’s become far more important to what the Sixers do on a nightly basis. As a result, he’s both raised his trade value and increased the chances he remains in Philadelphia this season.

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