Philadelphia 76ers: 3 needle-moving trades to push for at deadline

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(Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)

The Philadelphia 76ers have star power and an improving bench. Here are three trades that could spell title contention.

In just over one week, the Feb. 7 trade deadline will hit. The Philadelphia 76ers will look to improve their roster between now and then, ideally upgrading the bench in anticipation of a long playoff run. The bench shouldn’t be Elton Brand’s only focus, though.

The Sixers have an opportunity to swing for the proverbial fences — adding a fourth star to one of the best starting fives. Even if Anthony Davis and Bradley Beal are off the table, Philadelphia has the pieces to make a needle-moving trade.

Given the depth issues Brett Brown has dealt with this season, some might prefer a less aggressive approach. Joel Embiid, Jimmy Butler and Ben Simmons is enough star power to contend. Smoothing over the bench makes them competitive with Toronto, Milwaukee and Boston.

In the end, it comes down to competing at the highest level. The Sixers should bet on talent whenever possible, especially if another star is available for a reasonable price. Building a title contender requires some degree of risk. If you can get stars and it makes sense on paper, you do it.

It’s not as though trading for a star inherently drains the Sixers’ depth either. If Markelle Fultz is an important trade chip, you’re essentially packaging at least one non-contributor. Zhaire Smith fits the same bill. As does the 2021 Miami pick. The Sixers can shell out assets without killing an already-vulnerable second unit.

Here are some potential trade ideas.

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