76ers Land Nerlens Noel

Projected as the number one pick, Noel fell to 6th and was then traded.

Projected as the number one pick, Noel fell to 6th and was then traded.

In a curious mover, the New Orleans Pelicans have shipped draft pick Nerlens Noel, and a conditional first-round pick in 2014 (top five protected) to the Philadelphia 76ers for Jrue Holiday.  The move is curious for a number of reasons.  One, the Pelicans already have a starting point guard who they seemed to be very happy with in Greivis Vasquez.  But the Pelicans are also not only trading big for small, but they are also including their first round pick next season while taking on a larger contract and increasing payroll while decreasing cap flexibility.  The move seems to suggest that the Pelicans, who have Vasquez under contract for next season at a very affordable 2.1 million, may look to trade the point guard who was actually a better play-maker than Holiday (higher assists in fewer minutes with a better assist-to-turnover ratio).  Though their shooting percentages are even, and Holiday’s contact is bigger, Holiday is also much younger.

 

 

Jrue Holiday, who made his first All-Star appearance this season, will be suiting up for the Pelicans next year.

Jrue Holiday, who made his first All-Star appearance this season, will be suiting up for the Pelicans next year.

The move makes a lot of sense for the 76ers though, who are obviously in rebuilding mode after getting burned on a trade that saw them lose Andre Iguodala and promising big man Nikola Vucevic in order to bring in Andrew Bynum who did not play a single game for a team that was expecting to make a deep playoff run.  Instead, the 76ers found themselves in the lottery.  A trade involving Holiday might have been fairly expected when the 76ers draft point guard Michael Carter-Williams, but not only managing to get a promising young big man who was expected to go first overall, but also a first round pick from a team that will in all likelihood also be in the lottery next season is a coup for a team who is in rebuilding mode because it ensures that 76ers will get two lottery picks next year in a draft that promises to be much deeper, while also getting the team two lottery picks this season and clearing some serious cap space to allow the team to make a splash in free agency either this season, or next season when LeBron James is expected to opt out of his contract.

 

 

 

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