Sixers rumor recap: Kyrie trade fallout, Matisse Thybulle suitors, and more

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Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) reacts during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Los Angeles Lakers, Monday, Jan. 30, 2023, in New York. (AP Photo/Corey Sipkin)

It was a wild weekend for NBA trade news as the first big trade was made while many more rumors came forward. A fair amount of those, including the Philadelphia 76ers. Here’s a recap of some of the most recent news involving the Sixers.

The fallout from the Kyrie Irving trade

Kyrie Irving has officially been dealt to the Dallas Mavericks as the first major move of the NBA’s trade deadline has officially taken place.

Some were perhaps hoping to pick Brooklyn’s roster clean once they moved Irving, but that notion seems to have gone out the window after the return the Nets received, compounded with early reports of the team’s short-term plans.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the team is not yet finished ahead of the deadline.

Additionally, they may even explore the possibility of moving Spencer Dinwiddie (per Mark Stein), who was a part of the return for Irving, in a separate deal ahead of Thursday’s deadline. This can be done as long as the Nets do not include any other of their own players in the deal.

With that being the case, the Nets have gone from potential seller to competition for teams like the Sixers at the deadline.

More names entering the Matisse Thybulle market

The most often mentioned player available in the Sixers trade talks has, by all appearances, been defensive maestro Matisse Thybulle. The four-year veteran is coming up on his first taste of free agency, where he will be a restricted free agent, and after extension negotiations fell apart, it seems the team would prefer to cash out on any value before the offseason.

The Sacramento Kings have been said to be an interested party (Stein), and The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Keith Pompey named the Golden State Warriors as another team linked to Thybulle. Over the weekend, though, a surprising team joined the conversation. In a separate report by Marc Stein, the Atlanta Hawks have expressed interest in Thybulle ahead of the deadline.

What would the Hawks be offering the Sixers? Onyeka Okongwu certainly comes to mind, but would the Hawks be willing to move him for Thybulle? That remains to be determined. For now, that’s left up to speculation.

Philly has bigs on the mind

The Sixers are in the market to upgrade their backup center position. While this has been an issue for some time in Philadelphia, the team has failed to properly address the issue. The closest they came was when the team signed Andre Drummond in the 2022 off-season. However, he would not finish the season in Philadelphia as he would be included in the eventual James Harden trade.

This season, the team has attempted to solve that reoccurring problem with the addition of Montrezi Harrell, who shares a history with James Harden, Doc Rivers, and president of basketball operations Daryl Morey. That experiment, like the many before it, has been a clear failure, and the team now finds themselves looking to make a proper upgrade ahead of the deadline.

One name connected to the Sixers has been Utah Jazz forward Jarred Vanderbilt. The fourth-year player has been consistently at the center of rumors surrounding the Jazz, as has Malik Beasley and Kelly Olynyk.

Philadelphia has also been connected to the Timberwolves’ Naz Reid and the Pistons’ Nerlens Noel though both players may be deemed too expensive in terms of asset cost and salary cost, respectively.

The Sixers are expected to remain interested in a buyout situation should the Pistons fail to find a deal for the former Process player (Pompey).