Former Cleveland Cavaliers general manager and possible future Sixers president of basketball operations David Griffin made an appearance on SiriusXM NBA’s Draft special and dropped a bit of a Philly-related firecracker:
Interesting nugget in our @SiriusXMNBA NBA Draft special per David Griffin.
“Philly is very much looking to move up to get somebody they think will go in the top 5.”
— Tom Byrne (@1TomByrne) June 15, 2018
With recent rumblings that Sacramento may be looking to draft Michael Porter Jr. at #2, NBA Mock Drafts are being turned upside down:
The Kings are definitely still weighing it… https://t.co/6zzdPheQQL
— Sam Amick (@sam_amick) June 18, 2018
This brings me to the target I believe the Sixers should have their sights set on with a top-five pick. It once seemed inconceivable that Luka Doncic – the 2017-18 EuroLeague MVP – could’ve fallen out of the first two picks of the 2018 NBA Draft, but recent murmurs have begun to get louder with some believing he could fall to Dallas at No. 5. That brings us back to the Sixers. Could they be interested in bringing the 19-year-old Slovenian to the City of Brotherly Love? With moves like these, it would be hard to imagine passing up such an opportunity.
With that in mind, what would it cost?
Fultz/10/26 is enough to move up 3-5 spots in the first round. I'm ok with it. There seems to be mounting frustration in and outside the organization, so now would be the time to move on. Let him kill us from Dallas or Orlando.
— eytan (@shandershow) June 18, 2018
From this initially-rage-inducing tweet came a possible answer. I would not under any circumstances include Markelle Fultz in a trade to move up in this draft. It’s important to keep in mind that some variation of a package including Fultz/10/26/Covington/Dario has been the tentative framework of a deal for disgruntled San Antonio Spurs superstar Kawhi Leonard.
Without Fultz, the Sixers would have to come up with another young player with high upside and good character. Could Dario Saric be an attractive piece in a potential deal? I would be hard-pressed to hold up a trade of 10/26/Saric for a top-five pick, which I realize still might not be enough. Perhaps a 2019 first round pick could sweeten the pot.
If these reports are to be believed, Dallas might have eyes for Doncic. If so, Brett Brown & Co. would need to trade up to No. 3 (Atlanta) or No. 4 (Memphis) in order to jump the Mavericks. Both teams have solid guards in Dennis Schröder and Mike Conley, respectively. Some mock drafts have big men Jaren Jackson Jr. and Mo Bamba going with the third and fourth picks. Perhaps a deal for Saric, No. 10 (Mikal Bridges?), and No. 26 could help Atlanta with their massive rebuild or Memphis with their hunt to return to the postseason.
What do you think? Would you trade 10/26/Dario for a top-five pick? Would you pursue Doncic, Marvin Bagley III, or Wendall Carter Jr.? Would you roll the dice on Trae Young becoming Steph Curry 2.0? We’re only three days from the draft!