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Sixers Part Ways With Markelle Fultz, Trade For Bench Help
The Sixers executed four trades by the three o’clock NBA trade deadline. They brought in Tobias Harris, Mike Scott, Boban Marjanovic, Jonathan Simmons, Malachi Richardson, and James Ennis. They sent out Markelle Fultz, Wilson Chandler, and Mike Muscala.
We covered the trade for Harris, Scott, and Marjanovic previously. You can read about that major deal here.
Malachi Richardson was brought in from the Toronto Raptors, along with Toronto’s 2022 second round back, and the draft rights to Emir Preldzic. The Sixers sent Toronto cash considerations in the deal. Richardson, a 23-year-old shooting guard, was waived. He was averaging 2.8 points for his career with Sacramento and Toronto.
Around noon on Thursday, a few hours before the deadline, Sixers GM Elton Brand traded the rights to swap a 2021 second round pick to the Houston Rockets in exchange for James Ennis. The 28-year-old, 6’7”, small forward was averaging 7.4 points per game for Houston in 40 games this season. He had started 25 of them. He is shooting .36% from three and grabbing 2.9 rebounds per game. While he isn’t a great defender, he is competent enough to hold his own for 15 or 20 minutes off the bench for the Sixers. Bereft of decent wing players, Ennis is likely to see the floor quite a bit down the stretch for the Sixers.
The final trade is perhaps the most significant on the day. As the deadline approached the Sixers traded the former number one overall pick in the NBA draft Markelle Fultz to the Orlando Magic in exchange for shooting guard Jonathan Simmons, the Oklahoma City Thunder’s first-round pick in the 2020 draft, and a second round pick. The Thunder pick is the same one the Sixers had previously owned as a result of trading Jerami Grant to the Thunder several years ago. It is top 20 protected in the 2020 draft before turning into two second-round picks.
Jonathan Simmons is a 6’6” guard averaging 6.9 points for the Orlando Magic in 41 games played. He is among the league's worst three-point shooters at .22% on two tries per game. He pulls down 2.8 rebounds per game to go along with 2.3 assists and .4 steals. He has a reputation as a solid defender but appears to have fallen off significantly during his time in Orlando. His contract is partially guaranteed for next season at $1 million. How much playing time he receives remains to be seen, but likely it will be similar to James Ennis.
Markelle Fultz has not played for the Sixers since November 19th. He ends his career with the team having played in 33 games, starting 15 of them. He made four three-pointers and became the youngest player ever to record a triple-double in the final game of the 2017-2018 season.
Jacob Jones-Goldstein has written about the Sixers for Roundballrev.com, loves statistics, and Trusts the Process. He dabbles in fiction, watches a lot of movies, and goes to more concerts than he should.