With the trade deadline looming, it had been dead silent on the Philadelphia 76ers’ front as far as trade rumors go. The one rumor we have heard is that the Sixers will be trying to shed salary to get below the tax threshold, but it is hard to believe that a contending team won’t try to upgrade at the deadline. We are now starting to hear some rumors surfacing regarding the Sixers and some teams’ interest in defensive standout Matisse Thybulle.
Matisse Thybulle’s name was in trade rumors around the time of the 2022 NBA Draft, but since then, no substantial rumors have surfaced until today. Leading up to the NBA Draft, NBA insider Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports reported that Thybulle was being shopped and that the Portland Blazers and Dallas Mavericks had an interest in him.
Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer reported that sources said that the Sixers tried to trade Thybulle to the Trailblazers on draft night in a three-team deal that would have landed them Eric Gordon of the Houston Rockets.
Pompey also reported that two other West Conference Teams have an interest in Thybulle, including the Golden State Warriors and Sacramento Kings.
“Multiple NBA sources said the Golden State Warriors have had internal discussions about Thybulle and that they do like him as a defensive stopper. The Sacramento Kings are also reportedly monitoring his availability. A league source confirmed the interest, saying Kings’ coach Mike Brown is a fan of Thybulle, who would add a defensive presence to Sacramento’s starting lineup.”Keith Pompey
With three West Coast teams interested in Matisse Thybulle, what would a deal look like for these teams to acquire him?
A Kings’ Ransom
2023 Second Round Pick (from SAC, via IND)
2024 Second Round Pick (via SAC)
In this scenario, the Sixers are able to trade Matisse Thybulle, along with Furkan Korkmaz, who has been rumored to be on the block all season, and former 2021 First round pick Jaden Springer. In return, the Sixers would receive former Sixer Josh Richardson, who is a 3&D guard and could slot right into Thybulle’s role but be much better offensively.
This would also still leave roster spots available for the 76ers in hopes they would be able to lure buyout candidates to Philly. The Kings would be able to upgrade their roster defensively without giving up too much, while the Spurs would take on salaries in exchange for quality second-round picks and a flier on Jaden Springer.
San Francisco Adds a Warrior on Defense
In this trade, Philadelphia trades for a local kid who can play the wing or a guard position. The Sixers are loaded at the guard position, but DiVincenzo can play the wing and have a similar role to Matisse Thybulle. The former Villanova Wildcat is averaging 8.3 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 3.3 assists per game while shooting just above 39 percent from beyond the arc. He isn’t going to match the defensive skill of Thybulle, but he does bring some of the off-ball havoc that Thybulle causes.
DiVincenzo looks to get in passing lanes for easy steals and helps rebound, which is an aspect that this team struggles with. The Warriors would add a much-needed defensive-oriented player to their lineup to help guard some of the top guards and wings in the Western Conference.
Portland Finally Lands Their Defensive Ace
Trail Blazers receive:
Danuel House Jr.
Portland has been rumored to be open to trading Josh Hart and interested in Matisse Thybulle, so it only makes sense for the two teams to work together on a trade. Portland gets the player they are interested in and almost acquired last summer. Thybulle is a defensive fit on a team that is built around offensive guards Damian Lillard and Anfernee Simons. They also get another 3&D player in Danuel House Jr. and a movement shooter in Furkan Korkmaz to surround Lillard with. Thybulle, House Jr., and Korkmaz would be rotational upgrades over Justice Winslow and Nassir Little.
The Sixers would be trading for a Villanova legend in Josh Hart, who would fill an immediate rotation need as another defender who isn’t offensively inept. Hart is averaging 9.1 points, 8.1 rebounds, and 4.0 assists and is an average three-point shooter. Hart would be tasked with guarding one of the opponents’ top offensive scorers, and his rebounding ability would be welcomed.
It is no secret that the Sixers struggle with rebounding, currently ranked 28th in the NBA. Hart also showed in previous stops that he counted on offensively if needed scoring 19.9 ppg last season for the Blazers after he was traded from New Orleans. Korkmaz and House Jr. would need to be added for salary matching purposes, but it also opens up roster spots for the Sixers for any buyout candidates.
If Daryl Morey can find a deal that makes sense for the 76ers to trade Matisse Thybulle, he will definitely pull the trigger. What he won’t do is just give Thybulle away if his value isn’t as high as he thinks. The Sixers would rather keep Thybulle and see how his restricted free agency plays out than give him away for free.