The 76ers' focus in the days leading up to Thursday's NBA trade deadline is acquiring draft picks, according to an Eastern Conference executive.
The franchise wants to gain future compensation in exchange for Evan Turner, Spencer Hawes, and Thaddeus Young, said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity. With the most cap space in the league and an open roster spot, the Sixers will consider acquiring an expiring contract from a team looking to dump a salary. But that most likely will also involve receiving a draft pick.
As a result, the 76ers are believed to be the most active team in trade talks leading up to the deadline. The Sixers have had discussions with all 29 other NBA franchises.
They are unlikely to make a move until the final hours before the deadline, but there's also a chance the Sixers won't make any moves.
Turner's trade has seemingly become so imminent, he told Dei Lynam of CSN Philly that he is looking forward to seeing what comes of the trade deadline, saying, "I am excited to see what’s going to happen because it is like a riddle. Whatever happens, happens.”
Turner will be a restricted free agent after the season and has been quite good thus far this season, averaging 17.5 points, 3.6 assists and 5.9 rebounds per game, making him a valuable trade chip for the Sixers. Turner is going to demand more money on the market than a rebuilding Sixers team will want to offer him, so moving on now is the logical move.
Of course, finding a team to offer the right mix of first-round picks and expiring contracts could be tricky. And it seems unlikely that Young (17.1 PPG, 6.1 RPG) will be moved at all, though he's probably the most attractive target for other teams.
The fact that he has three years remaining on a pretty reasonable contract makes him attractive for the Sixers to hold onto, however, though for the right deal he'll likely be moved.