According to reports, the Chicago Bulls and Philadelphia 76ers are both trying to move up in this year’s draft.
The Bulls hold the 16th and 19th pick in the first round and also have been rumored to be pondering other major personnel moves. Aside from potentially getting involved in the Kevin Love sweepstakes, Chicago might also have their eyes set on landing a marquee free agent this summer, with Carmelo Anthony as the name most commonly linked to the Bulls. But first, per Chad Ford’s latest mock draft, the Bulls are trying to package their first rounders to get close to the top 10, with the 11th pick currently held by the Denver Nuggets as a target. It is reported that Chicago is looking for a shooter.
As for the Sixers, they have the more interesting assets if they’re looking to move up, holding their own first rounder (third overall) and the first rounder they received from the New Orleans Pelicans in the Jrue Holiday trade from last year (tenth overall). According to Ford, the Sixers are not interested in trading both picks in a package, but are willing to consider packaging the third pick with a player in order to move up. The player in question is Thaddeus Young, who is just 25-years-old and put up 18.8 points and 6.3 rebounds per game last year, and is on a relatively fair contract that pays him $8.6 million next season.
The Sixers are believed to be willing to trade their third overall pick and Young if it gives them a chance at the first overall pick, which the Cavaliers own. This becomes a chess match, as we all know that the top three picks will be some combination of Joel Embiid, Andrew Wiggins and Jabari Parker. If the Cavaliers believe they can get who they want at number three, then trading down and acquiring Young may make sense to them. But they’d have to convince the Sixers that they actually need to move into the first overall pick to get their guy. Alternatively, it’s possible the Sixers could be fine with landing any of the top three picks, which would make the trade moot, unless they think offloading Young’s contract is beneficial to them. You can see where this is going, a series of back and forth conversations that likely won’t resolve itself until the Cavaliers are on the clock on draft night.
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