With the draft almost 48 hours away, rumors off all shapes, sizes and significance are abound. The latest comes from Ken Berger of CBS Sports, reporting on a potential shakeup at the top of the draft involving the Sixers:
Shakeup at the top?
League sources say the Sixers want D'Angelo Russell and are willing to trade up from the No. 3 spot to get him. It would create an interesting opportunity for the Lakers, who could still get Jahlil Okafor and extract a future pick in the process. Among others, the Sixers control the Lakers' 2016 first-round pick, which is top-3 protected.
First off, it's important to keep in mind that smokescreen season is upon us, and it's nearly impossible to decipher the misinformation from the facts. But Berger is one of the most credible and reliable reporters around the league, and it'd be irresponsible to just sweep this under the rug.
This could be spun in any number of ways. It may corroborate a report from Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders, who reported that the Sixers were talking with Portland about a move up to No. 23. Our own Jake Pavorsky followed up with some buzz that Philly's looking to move up back into the mid-first round. So conceivably, an additional first-round pick could be ammo in a possible trade-up for the Ohio State guard.
There's also the possibility that it's the Sixers signaling New York that they won't let Russell fall past them without coming away with a king's ransom (if such a package exists from the Knicks).
Russell is an increasingly popular option in Philadelphia, as he isn't a big man, doesn't have career-threatening injury concerns and feasibly fills a glaring need, both talent-wise and positionally. But any way you slice it, we're about 48 hours away and information, however accurate, is going to keep on coming. Stay sane, people.