Analyzing Philadelphia’s Chances Of Landing Kevin Durant In 2016

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Feb 9, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward

Kevin Durant

(35) controls the ball against Denver Nuggets forward

Wilson Chandler

(21) during the first half at Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

How could it happen? 

At the very least, there have been some rumblings about the possibility of Durant to Philly. The Sixers now have someone on the staff whom Durant has previous relations with. According to Andrew Kulp of CSN Philly, the Sixers hired Todd Wright, who was the strength and conditioning coach at Texas, Durant’s alma mater.

It seems Durant had close ties with Wright.

“Wouldn’t it truly be beautiful if all the trades and all the decisions to not overspend were just part of Hinkie’s master plan to nab a player like Durant?”

“That’s one of the reasons I picked Texas as a school, because he does so much for the guys,” Durant said of Wright, according to “Not only gaining weight, but [making] sure you’re always healthy. He knows a lot about the body. He’s also like a doctor, because he knows why your knees are messed up … he does a great job of putting together a plan from the beginning.”

Despite the relationship, nabbing KD is still a relative long shot for the Sixers. Well, from a financial standpoint, it’s not too far off.

According to Spotrac the Sixers will be around $55 million — the predicted salary cap is $89 million — under the salary cap in 2016. Essentially, they would be able to offer Durant a contract worthy of his talent.

Lately, the Sixers have been reluctant to spend too much money, despite having a surplus. They won’t overpay for players who likely aren’t worth it, and one has to imagine it’s in the hopes of landing a big-name free agent.

If a player like Durant is available, it wouldn’t surprise me to see Sam Hinkie make a move to try to acquire him.

So money isn’t a big issue here. Winning, however, could pose to be a bigger issue than finances. Durant is in the prime of his career, there’s no denying that. But he might not want to waste his best years playing for a rebuilding team.

Jul 14, 2015; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Philadelphia 76ers center

Jahlil Okafor

(8) holds the ball away from New York Knicks forward

Alex Kirk

(53) during an NBA Summer League game at Thomas & Mack Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

How big of an issue is winning?

According to Derrick Bodner of, the Sixers need to make a quick improvement to even have a shot at KD.

While there’s no question that the Sixers are slowly improving, 45 wins this year might be too much too expect from this very young team.

The real question is probably just how many games can this team win this upcoming season? They now have the offensive focal point — third-overall pick Jahlil Okafor — they lacked last year, to go along with the defensive prowess of Nerlens Noel.

The two big men are surrounded by talented, albeit unsung players, including Nik Stauskas, Tony Wroten and Robert Covington. The Eastern Conference isn’t as competitive as the West, but it’s likely going to be tougher this year.

It’s tough to imagine the Sixers competing for a playoff spot, barring a significant upgrade at the point guard position.

But even if they fail to his 45 wins or even .500, there’s a shimmer of hope that Durant could go about free agency the same way the most polarizing player in the NBA did.

Next: Following The King?