Joel Embiid could be traded by the Philadelphia 76ers during the 2024 offseason should the franchise fail to reach the Eastern Conference Finals again — this, at least, according to Sportsnaut’s Matt Johnson.
“While the 76ers would receive significant interest from around the league if they decided to trade Embiid, it’s not the approach ownership or the front office wants to take right now,” Johnson prefaced before saying, “However, that stance will likely change in 2024 if Philadelphia can’t reach the Eastern Conference Finals.”
For six straight offseasons from 2018-2023, the Sixers were eliminated from the Eastern Conference playoffs. Five of those seasons, including the past three, saw a second-round elimination, while Philadelphia went winless in the 2020 postseason against the Boston Celtics in the first round.
Whether with Ben Simmons or James Harden running the show from the backcourt, Embiid has not had a supporting cast capable of helping him reach the Eastern Conference Finals. It remains to be seen if Harden will be back as the Sixers’ 1A star this summer as “The Beard” enters free agency.
New Sixers Coach’s Prior Experience Can Help Joel Embiid
New Sixers head coach Nick Nurse’s prior coaching experience with the Toronto Raptors — specifically, coaching Spanish big man Marc Gasol — could help Embiid unlock thus far hidden parts of his offensive repertoire according to NBC Sports Philadelphia’s Noah Levick.
“Is there anything from Gasol’s Raptors tenure that could be helpful? We think so,” Levick wrote. “Embiid generally won’t have as much freedom to survey the floor as Gasol, but he’s become excellent in many of the same spots where the Spanish big man dished out assists.”
Levick broke down the specificity of potential offensive sets the Sixers can run with Embiid playing the same role Gasol did for the 2018-19 NBA Champion Raptors within a Nurse-coached offense.
“Nurse may very well encourage more movement around Embiid in the Sixers’ Delay actions,” Levick wrote. “We imagine basic Chicago action (down screen into dribble handoff) with various alternative options — curling short instead of coming up for the handoff, the screener slipping backdoor, etc. — could be useful.”
Knicks Monitoring Sixers’ Joel Embiid Situation Closely
Should Embiid force the Sixers’ hand and request a trade before the front office has a chance to scope out what return he’d yield, the New York Knicks are a team that could get involved in trade talks according to ESPN’s Tim MacMahon.
“They’re not hoping for patience, they’re hoping for The Process,” MacMahon said on “The Hoop Collective” podcast. “I don’t know if that’s coming, but they’ve looked at that situation in Philly and there’s been a hope in New York that stuff in Philly will go haywire to the point where Embiid will ask out.”
Though MacMahon floated the possibility of Embiid ending up in the Big Apple, the ESPN reporter didn’t sound bullish on that scenario actually coming to fruition at any point.
“I don’t know the percentage odds on that, I would say they are slim, but that’s been the hope,” MacMahon said.