While many in Philadunkia nation were simply giddy over the fact that Andrew Bynum shot some free throws at the Sixers practice facility earlier this week, I would argue that now is the time to trade Bynum and improve the team’s future.
Through no fault of his own, Bynum isn’t the answer for the 7-6’s woes. 50+ losses is where this team is heading and not even Lebron makes this team a contender. No cap space and a lack of cheap talent is a pretty bad place to be in the NBA, regardless of whether or not Bynum is healthy going forward. As the halfway point of the season is nearing and the trade deadline is a month away, here is the first look at getting Bynum out of here.
This is not an indictment on Bynum. Instead what I am Iooking out for is long term future of the 76ers. I recognize more is needed to compete for an NBA title and I am taking a no lose risk in the long run.
After the jump, my trade idea for moving Andrew Bynum
Golden State Warriors get:
Andrew Bynum & Dorell Wright
Harrison Barnes, Andrew Bogut and Andris Biedrins
According to the ESPN.com trade machine, this deal works. Now lets look at why each side should pull the trigger on this swap.
In my opinion, Golden State snap accepts this trade. Dorell Wright is better than Barnes right now and they don’t project to get anything from Bogut or Biedrins this season. GSW is in win now mode and if this move doesn’t work out, Ce la vie, because they were able to clear Bogut and Biedrins off the cap.
If it does work, (A.K.A. Bynum staying healthy the next few years), they look like heroes and GSW becomes a serious threat for a Championship every year. Bynum likely wants to be back in Cali and San Francisco is a great place to be, they won’t have to sell Bynum on staying there for the long term.
Don’t laugh 76ers fans. Remember when the Eagles signed Nnamdi Asomugha in 2011? He was 1st or 2nd team All-Pro in 4 of the previous 5 years and been to 3 straight Pro Bowls. I honestly believe that something happened on that initial plane ride to Philadelphia from San Fransisco that ruined him. It is that same insane belief that makes this trade worth the risk because I think the opposite will happen with Biedrins.
It will take a bit of time and a gentle touch but by next season, at age 27, I wouldn’t be shocked to see this kind of production from the fallen star: http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=0&p1=biedran01&y1=2008
Yes, in 2007-08 Biedrins was a star at age 21. Now he has been broken down and lost most of his confidence, but a change of scenery might be of great help to Biedrins and in turn, he may be of great help to this franchise.
Can a plane ride change a players future? It already did once for fans of Philly sports, why not twice?
Next is the oft-injured Australian who is coming off of micro-fracture surgery. The difference between Andrew Bogut and the aforementioned Biedrins is that Bogut just needs to be healthy to be useful. That is easier said than done for the Australian Mr. Glass or is it? There is a certain amount of luck that it takes to stay healthy in the NBA. That luck has eluded Bogut since he was an All-NBA player in 09-10. Like Biedrins, Bogut is only signed through 2013-2014 and is well worth the risk.
Last but certainly not least is Harrison Barnes, a true SF. Already a decent defender (most rookies are outright terrible), Barmes is better than Turner and looks to have a bright future in the NBA as a cross between Rudy Gay and Luol Deng, albeit less talented on both ends of the floor. Most importantly, Barnes fills a huge need for the 7-6 as he is a young and cheap talent. This is something that the 76ers are in dire need of going forward as the NBA landscape has changed drastically because of the new CBA.
Let’s look at the worst case scenario. Biedrins and Bogut are never healthy or useful over the next season and a half, while Barnes never improves.
In this case, Philly ends up with a 2014 lottery pick (because the team will be terrible) and Barnes who is still an above average replacement level player making under $10 million the next 3 years total after this season.
The team will look like this at the start of the 14-15 season: Jrue, Thad, J-Rich (6.6 mil player option), Barnes, 2013 Lottery Pick, 2014 Lottery Pick, and $25 million in cap space if ET is not resigned as he will be a restricted free agent.
Let us look at the best case scenario. Bogut and Biedrins both return to near this level of play next year: http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=0&p1=bogutan01&y1=2010&p2=biedran01&y2=2008&y3=2005
Barnes takes a big step forward in year 2, and produces at an above average level for 30 minutes per game and ends up being a positive on both ends of the floor.
Suddenly, Philadelphia is a competitive team who actually has flexibility moving forward and isn’t held hostage by Andrew Bynum and the terrible decision making which has led the team almost to a point of no return.
I realize this isn’t the best available trade for the 76ers to win this season. However it is the best one to ensure a bright future for tomorrow which is an idea everyone should be on board with.
Unfortunately for fans of the 76ers, the GM, owners and Head Coach are all lacking the foresight to make such a trade.