Philadelphia 76ers rumors: Kyle O’Quinn wants out

Kyle O'Quinn | Philadelphia 76ers (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)
Kyle O'Quinn | Philadelphia 76ers (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The Philadelphia 76ers need to make a decision on the 29-year-old backup.

The Philadelphia 76ers shuffled the second unit at the trade deadline — in are Alec Burks and Glenn Robinson III, out are Trey Burke and James Ennis. The Sixers also cut Jonah Bolden to make room for Norvel Pelle, who signed a full NBA deal.

According to the Inquirer’s Keith Pompey, however, one player wanted to get cut, but wasn’t: Kyle O’Quinn.

This isn’t a huge surprise. There have been rumblings of O’Quinn’s discontent all season. The center minutes have gone almost entirely to Joel Embiid and Al Horford, while Pelle has managed to pass O’Quinn in the rotation — even when he was on a two-way contract.

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It’s understandable for O’Quinn, who still has something to offer, to want an expanded role, but it’s still strange to see his tenure run so sour. Embiid and Horford were already on the roster when he signed over the summer. He knew center wasn’t a position of need.

While many expected O’Quinn to get a steady dose of minutes as the third big, there was never a path to significant playing time. In fact, when it comes to contenders on the whole, there aren’t many who can offer O’Quinn a significant leap in playing time.

O’Quinn has value on offense — he’s a newly minted three-point threat, and he’s a snappy passer from the elbows. His issues lie on defense. A stout 6-foot-9, he lacks the foot speed to contain pick-and-rolls and defend in space. His utility is limited to matchups with paint-bound bigs.

Dynamic guards are still the Sixers’ kryptonite, and O’Quinn only brings further detriment. He’s part of a dying archetype, one Philadelphia has little use for. At this point, it seems the Sixers and O’Quinn are destined for a breakup in the near future.

Next. It's time for a new rotation. dark

While the buyout market is unclear, the Sixers will undoubtedly peruse the market. Wayne Ellington, for example, is a name that should hold some appeal. If the Sixers can find help on the perimeter, O’Quinn is next in line to hit waivers.