I know Ben McLemore is young, was drafted at 7, and is doing pretty good in the Summer league, but isn't it weird the Kings chose Nik Stauskas? They have McLemore and Rudy Gay. They could have drafted Noah Vonleh, who would've been a great fit for a team that needs rebounding outside of DeMarcus Cousins. Something's gotta give.
There's more to an NBA roster than a starting lineup, but should the Kings be cooling on McLemore, I'd happily take him. They have some cap constricting contracts on that team that limit flexibility for now and the future. If they truly want Josh Smith, as rumors say, then maybe we take a couple bad contracts on in order to get McLemore. He's still on his rookie contract. If he stinks, he stinks. We don't need to re-sign him. It would be a no-risk move that serves the exact purpose of our surplus cap, getting stuff for basically nothing. If he's good, then that's amazing. Perfect deal for the Sixers who will be charged the money gap all the way up to the salary cap floor of 56.76 million dollars anyway, so why not?
Some junk contract candidates include Jason Thompson, Derrick Williams, Carl Landry, Jason Terry, and Travis Outlaw. Jason Thmpson and Carl Landry have more than one year left while the others are on the last year of their deal.
I don't think the Pistons would be asking for much back in a Josh Smith trade. He didn't fit well and has 40+ million left on his contract. This doesn't give the Pistons much leverage to demand things. The Pistons have their positions filled and want to re-sign Greg Monroe, so I'm guessing they wouldn't want to take on anymore salary to get McLemore. So they need us.
I'd prefer not to have to take on Landry, only because the last year of his 3 year $19.5 million contract is fully guaranteed. The offseason before his last year is when the Sixers will start prioritizing free agency. Even though we're drastically under the cap now, it'd be nice to have as much money available as possible then. That, however, wouldn't prevent me from doing this deal though, for a variety of reasons. It's not like we're going to sign two max free agents. Jason Thompson's last year of his contract is only partially guaranteed, which is good. I dislike him. He is ineffectual.
This year, by way of the Sixers being the greatest franchise of all time and sticking to Best Player Available, looks to be another year filled with losses. As a result, we may be ending up with another high pick, regardless of any possible changes to the lottery (although, even though it doesn't matter to us much because we're 2 drafts into the rebuild, I doubt a change to the lottery like that can be just immediately instituted). My thought process here is that the contracts/players we take back in a deal to acquire Ben McLemore will certainly not make us good enough to jeopardize a shot at a pick in the 5 to 10 range. The reason I put the range like that is because I don't want to get caught up in the "we need a top-2 pick or I'm mad" outlook. We're set. Our core is fantastic. Even though getting a really high pick would be better, any pick we get will be fine. As has been said before, "tanking" (which may or may not actually exist) is a byproduct of the rebuild, not the goal.
Pistons - Get rid of Josh Smith. Maybe get a second rounder or something out of the deal. Can re-sign Monroe easier.
Kings - Get Josh Smith.
Sixers - Get Ben McLemore. And whatever contracts are necessary to get the deal done.
Pros: Sixers get a 21 year old highly athletic shooting guard with potential that is only on the second year of his rookie contract. Used some of the cap space. Would not affect possible win-loss total to great degree. Maybe we can deal some of the acquired guys at some point in their contract if they play well.
Cons: Having to see Jason Thompson play if he is involved in the deal.
Hopefully this Josh Smith thing to Sacramento is real. I don't see any better deals out there for us to jump in on. That would be the only criticism I'd entertain, if there were other tangible options. This seems feasible and gets us a young player with potential.
Utilizing our remaining cap space is important, but it isn't so important that a deal must be done. We have all the way to the trade deadline in February to make a deal. We have time. Even if a deal isn't done by then, it'd just be disappointing, not depressing. Depressing is the last 25+ years of Sixer basketball. That's over.
So...are there any other deals out there? Does anyone like McLemore in terms of potential as much I do? I'm thinking in our system, with the culture of our team, he could be similar to Bradley Beal if things go right. Maybe better. Obviously he has a lower probability of reaching his potential. But that probability would increase going from an odd franchise like the Kings to a solid franchise like the Sixers.
MCW/BenMac/KJ/Thad/Nerlens. I like it. Add in McRae, Thompson, Wroten, and Sims off the bench, and baby, you got a stew goin'.
Again, if I'm correct that this would be logical for all teams involved in the framework of this type of deal, there would be no risk for us. Only upside.