With the NBA Trade Deadline less than two weeks away, the Philadelphia 76ers have to decide if they want to bolster their current roster, trade away players to shed salary, or potentially both if they could. If they decide to trade players to shed salary, it appears the Sacramento Kings may be willing to help take Matisse Thybulle off their hands.
Marc Stein reported on his Substack on January 30 that the Kings are monitoring Thybulle as they look for better defenders on the wing in their quest for a playoff birth.
“Sacramento is said to be monitoring the availability of Philadelphia’s Matisse Thybulle as the Kings, unexpectedly holding the West’s No. 3 seed after a league-record 16 consecutive seasons out of the playoffs, ponder the pursuit of a more defensive-minded option on the perimeter,” Stein said.
Thybulle’s role with the Sixers has substantially decreased this season due to the additions of wings P.J. Tucker and De’Anthony Melton. This season, Thybulle is averaging 2.7 points, 1.2 assists, and 0.9 steals in 12.1 minutes this season. Trading him to a Western Conference playoff contender like the Kings would minimize the risk of trading him to a team they would have to face in the postseason.
Ex-Sixers Big Not Likely to Be Bought Out
On January 24, Stein reported that teams were looking at Kings’ center and former Sixer Richaun Holmes as a possible buyout candidate.
“Rival teams in need of size are monitoring Kings center Richaun Holmes as a potential buyout candidate in the event that Sacramento is unable to trade him before the deadline,” Stein said.
Stein followed up on Holmes’ potential buyout on January 30 when he said that Holmes is not likely to be bought out due to how complicated it would be for both sides to agree to it.
“One source with knowledge of the Kings’ thinking, meanwhile, insists that rival teams hoping for Richaun Holmes to become a buyout candidate if Sacramento can’t trade him…are poised to be disappointed. A buyout would be complicated for both sides with two years and nearly $25 million left on Holmes’ contract after this season.”
Though Holmes is not likely to get bought out, that doesn’t necessarily rule out a possible trade, but that would only be if the Kings put him on the trade market and if he would have suitors should they go that route
Thybulle Listed Among Sixers Potentially Traded
Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report reported that, should the Sixers not find any upgrades on their roster, they may look to trade some of their players, like Thybulle, to get under the luxury tax.
“The 76ers are looking to add to bolster their chances in the Eastern Conference, but in the absence of a move to improve, look for the franchise to shop a wing like Furkan Korkmaz or Matisse Thybulle (or guard Shake Milton) to get under the luxury tax,” Pincus said.
In a January 30 ESPN Roundtable, analyst Bobby Marks illustrated how such a trade could benefit the Sixers in financial savings.
“The only move that should be considered is the financial benefit of dropping below the luxury tax. The 76ers would receive a $16 million tax distribution if they shed $1.17 million in salary,” Marks said. Thybulle is slated to make $4.3 million this season.
Marks also said that the Sixers, along with the Boston Celtics, are among the teams who could comfortably stand pat at the trade deadline.
“I am putting the 76ers up there with Boston as a team that can contend for a championship without making a deadline deal.”