There's no rush to trade Elton Brand. He's got one year left on his deal, and though he's going to be looking for an extension, it's likely that he won't get one. So he'll either be amnestied (more on that sometime next week), walking free after next season, or traded. If he gets traded, as we discussed at length on the Twitters a few days ago, the Sixers would have to take a big contract back in return. This is generally seen as bad.
But if we've accepted the fact that the Sixers are not going to rebuild, then we've come to the crux of the decision. What would the Sixers be able to get for Sugar Bear? Either with Elton the Expiring Contract, Elton the Amnestied this offseason, or Elton the 2013 Cap Space. My worry is that no worthwhile free agent will be coming to Philadelphia any time soon. So if you can stomach taking back an uglyish contract with a bit of sweetener with it, that may be worth more than the inevitable terrible contract they dole out to Drew Gooden next offseason.
So without further ado, here are some potential trade options for Elton and his $18 million, including a bit of the sweet stuff they'd get back for him. Pick your faves, not your noses.Toronto Raptors: Andrea Bargnani, Jerryd Bayless and #8 Overall for Elton Brand and #15.
Getting into the top 10 would be lovely, and #8 would allow them to draft one of Andre Drummond, John Henson, or Jared Sullinger (among others). Bargnani is just 26 and he used to be a good shooter until his usage rate went up. The former first overall pick is definitely not at his best when he's the focal point, but he'd be a legitimate stretch 4 in this Sixers offense, which could certainly use the shooting.
I mean he's terrible at defense and bad at a lot of things but he also fills a need sorta and Bayless as a backup point guard plus the 7 pick jump would be nice. Toronto doing this would mean they've folded on the Bargs experiment and are ready to play in the 2013 Free Agent market but if Jonas Valanciunas definitely comes over then that's not out of the question.
Golden State Warriors: Richard Jefferson and Dorell Wright for Elton Brand.
I don't think GSW is so desperate to get rid of Jeffard Richardson to deal their first rounder even in a pick swap (the Iguodala trade is more likely) but they are plenty set at the 3 position with Klay Thompson and Brandon Rush in the fold. Wright didn't play well last year, but he's still just 26 and with a nice jumper. For a year of letting Jefferson back up Evan Turner and Wright, it might be worth it.
Brand doesn't fit in GSW next season with David Lee and Andrew Bogut around, but they'd probably be fine letting Chev come right off the bench in Tanktopia.
New Orleans Hornets: Emeka Okafor for Elton Brand.
Okafor's pretty redundant with Anthony Davis in town, and they'll be wanting to dip into the free agent pool in '13 as well. Even though Emeka was hurt a lot of last season (his tanking also ached), he's been surprisingly healthy the four years previous. He still patrols the paint, doesn't do anything too stupid offensively, and can rebound the crap out of the ball.
I don't know where NOLA plans on playing Davis. If they see him as more of a 4 than a 5, this trade may not make sense. Although I'm not sure that it makes sense now either.
New York Knicks: Amar'e Stoudemire for Elton Brand.
Lots of fire puns to be sure, but I'm not sure who does this. Maybe both, maybe neither. Stoudemire has three more years left on his deal and shedding salary really isn't NYK's thing. And if it was, I doubt they'd want to trade him in-division. But Elton's got that expiring and there's nothing Manhattan likes more than a shiny new free agent, which could come next summer if they pull this trade off. The Sixers owners get more EXCITEMENT! with a big name guy like Amar'e, who hasn't been good in a long time and maybe ever.
Pick-and-roll guy with Jrue Holiday at least?
Orlando Magic: Hedo Turkoglu, Chris Duhon, Daniel Orton, and #19 for Elton Brand.
Gotta make them salaries match. This is pretty ugly. But both Hedo and Duhon (dookie) only have an additional year on the contracts, so picking up a project like Orton and another first rounder may be worth it. Hedo next to Jrue and Evan? Duhon as an actual backup point?
I don't know man -- Hedo, though? Really?
Sacramento Kings: John Salmons and Hassan Whiteside for Elton Brand.
I don't really know why Sactown does this other than because Salmons is horrendous. The Sixers do it because they like the idea of a Salmons reunion tour and Doug Collins is a lox man himself. Whiteside's a nice little chip that helps match the salaries a bit more. The Kings have a ton of cap space and Brand's $18 million expiring is a nice way to fill it out.
Plus maybe they hope Chevy can harness DeMarcus Cousins? I'm spitballing -- work with me.