Philadelphia 76ers forward/center Nerlens Noel has been unhappy all season long. With all the Centers the Sixers have on their roster, there hasn’t been enough minutes to go around. This has led to a very upset Noel who clearly wants out and should’ve been granted that wish a long time ago.
Nerlens is averaging 8.4 points per game and 4.7 rebounds per game in only 17.9 minutes. Noel is playing well in the playing time he gets, he just needs to be somewhere that will play him and let him show his full potential.
— Def Pen Hoops (@DefPenHoops) January 25, 2017
The Toronto Raptors have needed a starting power forwards all season and the young Noel could be the answer. Although many people think of Nerlens as a center, alongside Jonas Valanciunas he could play the four position. With Jonas’ ability to shoot the mid-range jump shot, Noel’s lack of shooting shouldn’t be a huge disadvantage.
Nerlens Noel has shown the potential to be an elite interior defender, which is something the Raptors have been missing this year since Bismack Biyombo signed with the Orlando Magic this past offseason. Noel this year has been averaging one block a game in less than 18 minutes per game.
— Def Pen Hoops (@DefPenHoops) December 22, 2016
Nerlens is going to become a restricted free agent this offseason and the 76ers more than likely will not look to bring him back. Therefore, they should get some value for the big man while they still can. The Raptors could give up someone like Patrick Patterson and a first-round pick if necessary for Noel.
This is a high risk, high reward move for Toronto, because of Nerlens injury history. The team should take a risk though, considering they were on the losing end quite often in the month of January, going 8-10 in that month (also losing on February 1st).
Patrick Patterson has been a valuable player for the Raptors for the past few seasons, but with the addition of Jared Sullinger, he isn’t really needed anymore. Also, part of the risk is whether or not Sullinger can do what Patterson has done for the team, but if they have faith in him which they should a trade for Noel should be made.
Nerlens Noel has a ton of potential and could help improve some of the Raptors biggest weaknesses. His injury history is concerning but a move like this could potentially help Toronto get back on track. Noel should definitely be on the move before the trade deadline and Toronto would be a great spot for him to land.