Sixers president of basketball operations Daryl Morey is known for aggressively pursuing deals. Even with his team at 20-11 and leading the Eastern Conference in his first year on the job, that seems to still be the case.
The Ringer's Kevin O'Connor reported Monday that the team is "still seeking major moves to increase its championship odds."
Though O'Connor notes that "realistic targets are still unclear" with over a month until the March 25 trade deadline, he writes that "one name to monitor is Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry."
Acquiring the 34-year-old Lowry would be a quintessential win-now move, though one that could address a key area of need for the Sixers. Lowry, who's built a strong Hall of Fame case after growing up in North Philadelphia and starring at Villanova, will be a free agent after this season. With Lowry's $30 million salary, the Sixers wouldn't be able to pull off a trade by cobbling together bench players and draft picks; they'd need to send Toronto something more substantial.
He'd give the Sixers a true point guard and likely alleviate some of the heavy burden on Joel Embiid to generate good half-court looks late in games, as well as ensuring the Sixers had a facilitator on the floor with their second unit at all times in either Lowry or Ben Simmons. Lowry's willingness to fire from three-point range (7.1 attempts per game, 38.8 percent this season), leadership and playoff experience could all also be useful.
While the Raptors have won their last 16 games without Lowry, including Sunday's victory over the Sixers, they're obviously well aware of his value in the postseason. And, after a 2-8 start, Toronto has looked like a team deserving of respect come playoff time.
Another big-name player who was a theoretical option for the Sixers after the Nets landed James Harden is Wizards star Bradley Beal, though O'Connor reports, "Unless something changes between now and the deadline, Bradley Beal won’t be available. All indications are that he and the Wizards front office will wait until the offseason to sort out their future."
If the Sixers don't make a splashy trade, it would be unsurprising to see Morey acquire a bench player or two. Rotations tend to shorten in the playoffs, but the Sixers' second unit has struggled lately and could be upgraded before the deadline.