The Sixers‘ stance so far this offseason – as conveyed to multiple reporters – has been that Tyrese Maxey is off the table in trade talks, even for a superstar player. Discussing that subject on the latest Hoop Collective podcast, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, Tim MacMahon, and Tim Bontemps expressed some skepticism about just how untouchable Maxey really is.
“They want you to know that you can’t have Tyrese Maxey,” Windhorst said. “Prime Michael Jordan is available? Don’t call. 25-year-old LeBron James is available? Lose our number. Giannis Antetokounmpo says, ‘I want to be a Sixer’? If Tyrese Maxey is the ask, just keep walking. … I don’t trust them at all on that, but I will say to you that is what is being said.”
While the Sixers are by no means looking to move Maxey, ESPN’s trio believes the front office’s stance on the young guard would be more malleable than what’s been reported if the team has a legitimate chance to acquire a star, including perhaps Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard.
As Windhorst and Bontemps observe, while Philadelphia’s plan not to sign Maxey to a rookie scale extension is ostensibly about maximizing cap room in 2024, he would also be easier to trade if he’s not extended, since he wouldn’t be subject to poison pill provision rules in 2023/24.
Here are a few more trade-related rumors and notes:
- Although he’s not reporting that any trade discussions have taken place with the Trail Blazers or that the Jazz will make a run at Lillard, MacMahon said on The Hoop Collective podcast that he has heard Utah is “intrigued by the possibility” of acquiring the All-Star guard, confirming previous reports. MacMahon, Windhorst, and Bontemps ultimately believe the Jazz aren’t ready to make significant deal for a win-now player who’s about to turn 33, but they note that Lillard has a connection to Utah, having played his college ball at Weber State, and the Jazz’s collection of future first-round picks would dwarf what Miami could offer.
- At the trade deadline, the Jazz‘s position was that Lauri Markkanen, Walker Kessler, and Ochai Agbaji were their only players who were off the table in trade talks, according to MacMahon, who believes that if Utah did pursue a star this offseason, Markkanen and Kessler would be the only untouchables.
- Appearing on NBA TV (Twitter video link), Ira Winderman of The South Florida Sun Sentinel says the Heat are willing to discuss anyone except their two All-Stars as they negotiate a possible deal with Portland for Lillard, who wants to play in Miami. “Put it this way, they basically have loaded up one of those PODS dumpsters in front of the Trail Blazers and said, ‘Take anyone out of here you want besides Bam Adebayo and Jimmy Butler,'” Winderman said. “Maybe they’ll go back and forth on Caleb Martin a little, but it’s basically, sort of, ‘Come and pick and choose. Tell us what you want. Anything else is yours.’ The Heat are all-in on this. This is their moment. There’s a reason they didn’t go hard after Bradley Beal. There’s a reason they held off on some other moves. This is their play.”