The Philadelphia 76ers and New Orleans Pelicans are having discussions regarding second-year big man Jahlil Okafor. The 76ers are loaded with centers, and are more than likely going to trade at least one of them before the trade deadline (February 23rd).
Jahlil had a lot of promise coming out of Duke. There were many arguments about who was better, him or Karl-Anthony Towns.
At this point, most people have realized that Towns has been the better NBA player, and it seems like Jahlil has been somewhat forgotten. Joel Embiid’s breakout season has a lot to do with it, but whatever else it may be, it is clear that Okafor needs to be traded.
Although his stats have been down this season compared to last year, that is mostly because he has been playing less minutes. With all the big men on Philadelphia’s roster, there are not enough minutes to go around. This is one of the main reasons Okafor needs to be moved as soon as possible.
The Sixers are in advanced trade talks to send Jahlil Okafor to the Pelicans for a 1st-round draft pick (via USA Today).
— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) February 6, 2017
The following is from USA today
“The Sixers, who are known to have engaged with eight teams regarding Okafor, are pushing for the Pelicans’ first-round pick in the deal.”
Since then, reports have come out that the Sixers are searching for more than just a first round pick. There have been multiple reports saying that point guard Jrue Holiday could be involved in the trade. Jrue was originally drafted by the 76ers back in 2009, and this would be a perfect time for him to return to his old team, who are very-weak at the point guard position.
Holiday made his only All-Star appearance as a Sixer, and he had played his best basketball while in Philadelphia. Reuniting with the 76ers could cause for a resurgence of Jrue’s career, but his main problem in the past few years has just been staying on the court. Holiday has always been a quality point guard, but his constant battle with injuries is his main concern. The 76ers really lack in the point guard position, somthis would be a good trade for them if Jrue can stay healthy.
— SPORTSRADIO 94WIP (@SportsRadioWIP) February 7, 2017
Jahlil still has a lot of potential, but in Philly he will not be able to reach it, with all the young big men on the roster. In a Pelicans uniform, Okafor could strive while playing alongside superstar Anthony Davis — which would probably help with his development as well. An Okafor for Holiday deal makes sense for both teams looking to fill holes on their roster.
If this trade does happen, look for both teams to make a likely playoff push.