With Philadelphia 76ers’ Nerlens Noel Rehabbing With Delaware 87ers, Forbes writer Brian Mazique Sees Value Trading For Chicago Bulls’ Nikola Mirotic
Until the Philadelphia 76ers re-sign center/power forward Nerlens Noel to a multi-year contract, deal him to another team, or allow him to walk away unfettered in free agency, trade rumors will persist. Until then, everyone and anyone who writes about basketball has weighed in on the future of Noel.
And why not? Speculation is wild. All you need to do is drop Noel’s name into the narrative, plop a name of another NBA team, mix in an underperforming player’s name, and “VOILA!”… instant NBA rumor.
But while it’s easy to “poo poo” the rumors, it’s naive to ignore the signs. Nerlens Noel became injured just as the regular season approached. At a time where he could shine, he couldn’t answer the bell.
Nerlens Noel elected to have arthroscopic surgery as the season opened, essentially eliminating his opportunity to play for the Philadelphia 76ers while the team scrambled to manage minutes for both Jahlil Okafor and Joel Embiid.
Secondly, the team extended both Jahlil Okafor and Joel Embiid, but has remained ominously silent on the matter of any contract negotiations with Noel. In fact, a recent article of Josh Wilson of Sixer Sense (a must read, by the way) revealed that Noel’s situation has deteriorated to the point where he is the center most likely to be dealt via trade.
Before sentiments take sides on the issue, Noel created this fissure by calling out the front office publicly. From that point forward, his fate has been sealed. All that is left is to find a deal that works for two NBA teams that gives Noel a new home.