It didn’t take long for Daryl Morey to leave his stamp on the Sixers roster, though I admittedly didn’t see things moving quite this fast.
It took Daryl Morey like three hours to plug the Sixers' biggest weakness.— Justin Verrier (@JustinVerrier) November 19, 2020
With a trade swapping Al Horford for Danny Green, a draft selection of a player who could/should have been a lottery pick—Tyrese Maxey—and another trade swapping Josh Richardson (ok fit) for Seth Curry (better fit) has left the Sixers in a drastically better situation than they began the day with.
We’ll start with the selection of Tyrese Maxey with the 21st overall pick. He’s fairly being pegged as a “steal” and earlier in the week I included him in a piece discussing prospects who the team should consider trading up for (the consensus was that he wouldn’t be available at 21—quite frankly, he shouldn’t have been). *He’s discussed at the 25:45 mark in the pod below
Here’s my scouting report from earlier in the week:
“The skinny: Bucket-getter whose average athleticism limits his upside, but is a reliable jumper away from a complete offensive package. Classic two-guard with a little combo appeal. Excellent on-ball defender, engaged off-ball—defense keeps his floor high, 20+ PPG potential provides a nice ceiling.
Strengths: Can score from all over the floor, and is a high-level finisher around the rim. Is comfortable shooting off the dribble or off the catch, though needs to become more consistent in this regard. Has some pick-and-roll appeal. Defense is impressive for his age—will defend 1-3 at a strong level; engaged off-ball.
Weaknesses: Without elite playmaking or shooting he’s somewhat less ideal for a guard in today’s NBA. Pair that with somewhat average athletic traits and it’s not a surprise he’s valued the way he is.
Fit with the Sixers: This team needs a bucket-getter and someone who can help out a little in the pick-and-roll, and Maxey has that skillset. While I’m not sure Maxey will have the immediate offensive impact we’d hope in year one (though he could) I believe he’s ready to play strong defense from the jump.”
I’ll have more on Maxey throughout the week.
Here’s what I had to say on the Horford trade when it happened:
Green is a a veteran 3-and-D wing with plenty of playoff and championship experience. His best days are well behind him, but he can still space the floor—36.7% on 4.8 threes per game last season, and 45.5% on 5.4 threes the year before—and play competent team defense, with a dose of on-ball value.
Ferguson is somewhat of a throw-in flier. He’s logged a decent amount of time over the past three seasons in OKC, and while he’s only 22, he isn’t much more than an inconsistent spot-up shooter who can handle difficult defensive matchups. I would imagine he’ll be used to spell Ben Simmons in a wing stopper role off the bench, if he’s able to crack the lineup at all. Obviously at his age he can still add a reliable jumper, in which case this sort of low-end flier on a potential role player would pay off.
One thing of note on both Green and Ferguson, they each ranked in the top 10 of “matchup difficulty” in the NBA last season—a list that Ben Simmons topped. Adding a bevy of somewhat interchangeable and versatile wing defenders is certainly on Morey’s checklist this offseason.
In Horford and Green, both teams are getting a player that fits their roster much better than the one they’re giving up, and both players are on bad contracts relative to their value—much will be made of who won the deal, but the truth is it’s a smart move for both sides. That’s what happens when you have two good GMs working on a deal.”
On the Richardson deal:
The Sixers need shooting and Curry provides that at an elite clip (43.3% from three in his career). While I was a fan of J-Rich, his skillset simply wasn’t an ideal fit with our current roster, and his being a trade chip that was more or less entering a contract year made his being moved likely. Curry, on the other hand, is locked up until 2023 on a team-friendly deal at $8 mil per year (three years). Of all the pieces added tonight he could very well be the most impactful.
On the 49th overall selection, Isaiah Joe (from my Sixers-centric Big Board earlier in the week):
“Arkansas, Guard, 6’5” 180 lbs
Versatile shooter with NBA range. Can run off-screens, spot-up, or shoot off-the-dribble. Has some playmaking potential once he’s run off the line. Promising defender who can pair good length and quick feet to disrupt on-ball and off. Will need to develop his body and game a little more to truly carve out an NBA role, but there’s a lot to like if he’s around at 34/36.”
On the 56th overall pick, Paul Reed:
A big from DePaul, Reed is a gifted athlete with good size and a long wingspan to disrupt on defense. He’ll likely be used as a bouncy rim-runner in the NBA who provides small-ball versatility on defense. A swing trait for him is the jumper; if he can add a reliable shot from three on pops and as a trailer then it’ll go a long way in justifying his small-ball value/versatile skillset. I wouldn’t expect too much from him—cross your fingers and hope he can be a plus role player—but it’s nonetheless great value at 56.