There is roughly a month until the Philadelphia 76ers‘ training camp is set to begin.
Instead of the typical location in Camden, Doc Rivers and the rest of the team will travel to The Citadel in Charleston where they will attempt to prepare for the season without distractions.
While most are itching for the return of basketball, there is still some work to be done behind the scenes before the team is set to prepare for the regular season.
Sixers Current Roster
As things currently stand, the Sixers have 16 players on the roster, as well as both of the two-way slots filled. The NBA sets the limit at 15, meaning they will need to find a route to shorten the roster by one ahead of the season’s start.
How can the Sixers get down to 15 men?
A consolation trade
One route that has been discussed to solve the Sixers’ roster issues would be a two-for-one or three-for-two trade. This would eliminate the additional player on the roster and could potentially land the Sixers another capable rotational piece.
A popular package that has been floated around on Sixers Twitter has been flipping Matisse Thybulle and Furkan Korkmaz. The “Make-it Take-it” duo are near-polar opposites on the court, and looking for a middle ground in their skillset makes a great deal of sense. Their two salaries combine for $9.3 million this season which also gives the Sixers a nice amount of financial flexibility to search for targets.
Adding one more capable rotation piece would be a cherry on top of the already impressive off-season. It obviously takes two to tango, so finding an interested team would be essential to getting a deal done. Names like Maxi Kleber, Cam Reddish, Reggie Bullock, Larry Nance, and Josh Hart are all ones that could make some sense.
Who could be cut?
If there is not a trade, the Sixers will be forced to cut one of the members of the current roster in order to get under the 15-man limit. Here are the most likely candidates:
The most likely candidate to be on the outside looking in of the Sixers roster is Trevelin Queen. The reigning G-League MVP was given a two-year deal worth $3.6 million by the Sixers this offseason. However, only $330,000 of this is guaranteed, meaning if they elect to cut him, this is all the Sixers will be on the books for.
There is a lot to like about Trevelin Queen. Last season in the G-League, he averaged 25.3 points, 6.6 rebounds, and 5.0 assists per game. He attempted 9.7 three-pointers per game and also produced a ridiculous 3.4 steals per game.
His toughness, three-point ability, and solid defense would be a great fit on this Sixers team. However, he did not have a stellar summer league to sure up his roster spot and could be on the outside looking in this year if another move does not occur.
The Sixers drafted Isaiah Joe with the 49th pick in the 2020 NBA Draft. Since this time, he has played just 992 total NBA minutes and has had limited opportunity to show what he can truly do.
Year three looks to be somewhat of a make-or-break season for the Arkansas product, but it is also worth noting that his contract is non-guaranteed. Cutting Isaiah Joe would be the simplest financial decision for the Sixers as they make their evaluations.
It certainly would be frustrating to see Isaiah Joe go without him getting a true chance. While the coaching staff certainly has a better idea of what he is capable of, there was a great deal of excitement surrounding Joe following his arrival in Philadelphia.
The Sixers certainly are in need of the sharpshooting he can provide, and Joe made a positive impact in summer league by stepping up as a high-level performer on the court and as a leader. It seems likely he will be back next season, but the possibility of him being released cannot be ruled out.
If there is to be a cut, it would seem Trevelin Queen or Isaiah Joe are certainly the most likely candidates. When looking at the other possible players, there are no true standouts. Bball Paul is also on a non-guaranteed contract but has almost certainly earned himself a role. Charles Bassey has about $74,000 guaranteed for next season but is the only other center on the roster outside of Joel Embiid and Paul Reed.
Jaden Springer was a first-round pick just last season, and it is doubtful the Sixers would be willing to part with him just yet. Charlie Brown Jr and Julian Champagnie occupy the team’s two-way slots.
It is unlikely the franchise would be willing to move on from Furkan Korkmaz without getting anything in return, especially considering his $5 million contract is a flexible trade asset.
The bottom line is there are still some tough decisions to make ahead of the start of training camp. While the most notable moves were already made, the moves around the margin can prove just as impactful over the course of a season.
Don’t be surprised if Daryl Morey finds the missing piece of the puzzle to solve these issues before the team travels down to Charleston.