Before the season even began, trade rumors involving the veterans on the Sixers’ roster began circulating, particularly involving swingman Evan Turner. Now, with it rumored that Sam Hinkie is attempting to package Turner with big man Spencer Hawes, it appears that the two may never step foot on another court as a member of the Sixers.
All-Star weekend kicks off tonight with the Celebrity Game and Rising Stars Challenge. Without another game until next week, the trade deadline will pass prior to Philadelphia’s favorite tankers taking the floor again. Turner has been rumored to drawing interest from teams such as the Charlotte Bobcats and San Antonio Spurs. February 20th is quickly approaching, and Charlotte seems most likely at this point. Michael Jordan is desperate to bring a winning team to his fan base, and with rookie head coach Steve Clifford running the show and Al Jefferson dominating the paint, the Bobcats are in the Eastern Conference playoff picture.
Looking to make a playoff push may be just the leverage the Sixers need to get what they have been looking for in return for their fourth-year swingman, a first-round pick. That would give Hinkie a third first-rounder at his disposal, and fans of the rebuild would go wild come draft day.
Tom Sorgensen of the Charlotte Observer speculates the package that may be offered to Philadelphia. According to Sorgensen, Charlotte is prepared to offer the expiring contract of Ben Gordon and a first-round pick in this summer’s draft. While that sounds ideal for both teams, the question becomes: what pick do the Bobcats include? Charlotte owns the rights to both Portland and Detroit’s first-rounders. Portland’s will be a late pick, giving is substantially less value, and while Detroit’s is top-8 protected, they currently hold the 10th worst record in the Association. If Hinkie can acquire Detroit’s pick in the deal, there is the potential for the Sixers to be picking three times in the first ten to twelve picks.
It seems like a no-brainer if this deal is on the table, and Chad Ford even said he would be shocked if the Sixers didn’t pull the trigger if this was in the realm of possibilities. Regardless, Hinkie may very well hold on to the last minute hoping for a better offer to come along. Still, that remains unlikely. With that said, Turner, at the very least, appears to have played his last game as a Sixer.
Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News pegged Spencer Hawes, along with Turner, as players that the Dallas Mavericks may target as the deadline draws near. While there is no word on whether the two teams have actually talked about a deal, Hawes certainly would provide an offensive upgrade over Samuel Dalembert and Dejuan Blair, in addition to adding depth to the front line behind Dirk Nowitzki.
With that said, the Mavs more than likely do not have enough to go along with the expiring contract of Shawn Marion in order to pry the smooth shooting big man from the Sixers. Still, if we have learned anything from Hinkie’s time here it is to prepare for the unexpected.