There’s no singular reason the Philadelphia 76ers are winless to start the season. Joel Embiid looks a shell of himself (thanks to an offseason foot injury revealed Friday). Tyrese Maxey isn’t getting enough touches. Matisse Thybulle has been relegated to Siberia, as has Paul Reed. Oh, and Philadelphia played the league’s top defense in its opener and Giannis Antetokounmpo in game two.
So no, there isn’t any one reason the Sixers look rough out of the gate (except for you James Harden. You look marvelous). Likewise, there isn’t any one fix that will shore up every single problem the Sixers face at the moment. But as it stands, a reliable, capable second-unit floor general is missing from the lineup, with both Tyrese Maxey and James Harden taking over those responsibilities.
But a recent trade proposed by Heavy Sports’ Sean Deveney sees the Sixers land one such player.
Sixers Get: Kendrick Nunn (PG)
Lakers Get: Furkan Korkmaz (SG)
According to Deveney, the move wouldn’t be much more than a band-aid, albeit one that cures a major Lakers issue.
“Look, Korkmaz is not going to save the Lakers season by any stretch. But the fact is, if the Lakers want to do something to address their shooting woes without coughing up a pick, Nunn is their only chip—and not a particularly valuable one at that. Korkmaz has been up-and-down in his NBA career from the 2-point arc, including only 29.4% on 3s last year, but is a 35.5% shooter in his career. It’s worth a shot, so to speak.”
In truth, the deal has less to do with the Sixers adding guard depth as it does with satiating the Los Angeles Lakers’ desperate need for shooting. It’s something Deveney gathered from one Western Conference executive.
The Lakers Could Use Help With Shooting, Frontcourt
According to a Western Conference exec that spoke with Deveney, the Lakers are improved, but lack talent in one key area: shooting.
“The roster is better than it was last year, it’s younger and more athletic. But there are still a lot of places where things do not make sense. They’re hurting for shooting. We knew that coming into the year, and they did not pay enough attention to that as they were adding people. They don’t have a real answer up front, either. Do you want to play (Anthony) Davis at the 5? Is that the best thing for him? They got some pretty good backup big guys but they did not really get a starter who is worthy of playing there.”
Though it doesn’t take an anonymous executive to point out the obvious for the Lakers. Not a single Laker is shooting above 28% from three. Even worse, only LeBron James, Lonnie Walker, and Anthony Davis are shooting over 50% from two (min. 10 attempts). Only Davis and Austin Reeves have an adjusted true shooting score above 100 (and Reeves has only attempted five field goals this season).
Again, these stats are an eyesore. They’re also ones that NBA legend and de facto GM LeBron James is well aware of. The former Cavalier opened up on his team’s lack of shooting against the Golden State Warriors Wednesday night.
LeBron James: ‘We’re Not a Team [With] Great Shooting’
After the Lakers dropped another game to the Warriors Wednesday, LeBron James got candid with the Lakers’ lack of shooting.
Korkmaz wouldn’t be the magic bullet for Los Angeles. But he would certainly be Los Angeles’ best deep option, even if consistency hasn’t been his calling card.