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June 30, 2024

5 teams who could trade for Paul Reed

Paul Reed's future in Philadelphia is in doubt now that the team has reportedly signed Andre Drummond. Which teams could make sense for Reed?

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Bball Paul 6.30.24 Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports

Paul Reed's time in Philadelphia may be nearing its end.

The Sixers reportedly agreed to a two-year contract with Andre Drummond on Sunday evening, putting the future of Paul Reed in doubt. 

Reed has two non-guaranteed seasons left under contract worth a total of about $15 million. The Sixers relieving themselves of that financial obligation could make filling out the rest of their roster easier, with a new backup center seemingly in place. The Sixers likely view Reed as a positive asset, though, and would presumably rather trade him and receive some sort of compensation in return -- even if it is only for 50 cents on the dollar -- than just waive him.

If the Sixers salary dump him for little to no return, over a dozen teams could make sense as trade partners. But the Sixers will almost certainly try to find one which actually values Reed.

So, which teams could make sense as suitors?

Chicago Bulls

Former Sixers draft pick Nikola Vucevic is the only center under contract for the Bulls after Drummond departed Chicago for Philadelphia. It could open the door for Reed, who was briefly a mentee of sorts under Drummond's tutelage, to step into Chicago as a backup center with a chance to supplant Vucevic, whose stock has plummeted in recent seasons.

The Bulls have several rotation-caliber guards who make similar money to Reed and could fill a role for the Sixers. With the surging Coby White likely off limits and the same being true for the newly-acquired Josh Giddey, the most appealing option is Ayo Dosunmu, an athletic and disruptive guard with great size and length who is coming off a career-best three-point shooting season. Jevon Carter is older and less exciting, but is a pest as an on-ball defender with a reliable jumper.

Something like Reed and a second-round pick for Dosunmu, or Carter and a second-round pick or two for Reed, could make sense for both teams.

Is Paul Reed's future in Philadelphia?

New Orleans Pelicans

Jonas Valanciunas is reportedly signing with the Washington Wizards and Larry Nance Jr. was used in the trade that netted the Pelicans Dejounte Murray. Rookie Yves Missi is the only center New Orleans has under contract who is expected to receive a chance to earn regular rotation minutes. Suddenly, a productive backup who is only 25 years old like Reed could be extremely appealing.

Unlike with Chicago, a Reed trade with New Orleans would be extremely complicated, as the Pelicans do not have any players on roster who are obvious fits for the Sixers. It is hard to see the Pelicans trading Jordan Hawkins a year after drafting him in the lottery. Additionally, the Pelicans have traded their second-round picks in each of the next five seasons.

However, the Pelicans seem nearly certain to move star scorer Brandon Ingram, and while the Sixers appear to be out of those discussions, they could get involved in the trade as a third team. Reed would go to New Orleans, and the team acquiring Ingram would send a player or collection of second-round picks to the Sixers.

Oklahoma City Thunder

The Thunder have more than $30 million in cap space, and right now the backup center spot behind rising star Chet Holmgren is a question mark. The Thunder are reportedly interested in signing Isaiah Hartenstein, but if they cannot sign him because of interest from teams like the New York Knicks and Orlando Magic, they could look at Reed as a solution.

Reed is good enough to be part of a rotation for a very good team, but young and cheap enough that it is not as if they would be locking themselves into playing him should things not work out.

Reed makes almost the exact same amount of money next season as Oklahoma City forward Kenrich Williams, a jack-of-all-trades player who can slot into just about any frontcourt position and at least be passable on both ends of the floor. He will not blow you away with any skills, but he is extremely reliable and would give Sixers head coach Nick Nurse some optionality with his second unit lineups.

Oklahoma City also has an infamously plentiful collection of draft picks.

Another factor worth noting: Vince Rozman was the Sixers' Vice President of Scouting, largely heading the team's draft scouting, when the team drafted Reed in 2020. Rozman now holds a similar position in Oklahoma City.

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Utah Jazz

The Jazz, of course, are the ones responsible for the bizarre structure of Reed's contract. They signed him to an offer sheet last summer specifically designed to discourage the Sixers from matching the deal. The Sixers did end up retaining Reed, but now that he is likely on the trade block, a deal with Utah could make sense. 

As the Jazz prepare to embrace a youth movement, trading spark plug scorer Jordan Clarkson for Reed -- with the Sixers perhaps attaching a second-round pick as well -- could make sense. Clarkson is a true bucket-getter; he had a down year from an efficiency standpoint but his track record as a scorer speaks for itself. He would be a wonderful sixth man for Nurse who could start in a pinch if needed.

Utah has significant cap flexibility and nearly as many future draft picks as Oklahoma City, so a deal without Clarkson involved could work as well.

Charlotte Hornets

The Hornets hope that Mark Williams is their center of the future, but they lack a solidified backup center behind him. With nearly $20 million in projected cap space, Reed could appeal to a rebuilding team due to his youth and athletic tools.

The Hornets have two players who could fit into the Sixers' plans and make a similar amount of money as Reed: wing Cody Martin and point guard Vasilije Micić. Martin is a solid defensive wing whose offensive utility is questionable; Micić is a creative pick-and-roll orchestrator whose rights the Sixers traded to Oklahoma City in the trade they made at the 2020 NBA Draft to get off Al Horford's contract. Micić averaged 10.8 points and 6.2 assists per game in 30 games (21 starts) for Charlotte to end the 2023-24 season.

One of these players and a second-round pick or two could make up a reasonable offer for Reed, and the Hornets have a surplus of future second-rounders -- including that of the Sixers in 2025.

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