Former Sixers center Nerlens Noel is reportedly heading to Brooklyn.
Noel is set to join the Nets on a 10-day contract, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported Saturday.
Noel only appeared in 14 games this season for the 15-48 Pistons before agreeing to a contract buyout with Detroit. One of his three starts came on Jan. 10 in Philadelphia. The Sixers blew out the Pistons, though Noel did block three shots and make the third three-pointer of his NBA career over a surprised Joel Embiid.
“I’ve got a lot of memories here,” Noel said before that game, “a lot of relationships — Joel especially, having him come in and helping him learn a couple of things when he was a rookie. Being a year or two ahead of him, I took a lot of pride in that, helping him build the foundation that he has today. He’s a great player — Hall of Fame (in the) future. And the whole coaching staff, front office, everybody. I have great relationships and I valued my time here.”
The Nets are 35-28 and sixth in the Eastern Conference standings after coming back from a 28-point deficit Friday night to beat the Celtics in Boston. We’ll see whether Noel can be impactful for Brooklyn as a backup center behind Nic Claxton. Second-year big man Day’Ron Sharpe is another notable name in that conversation. Ben Simmons has knee and back concerns and hasn’t played since the All-Star break.
Because he was waived before the March 1 deadline, Noel is eligible for the playoffs.
The Sixers have made one post-trade deadline signing thus far in Dewayne Dedmon. The 33-year-old center was active on Feb. 15 vs. the Cavs but did not play, and he then missed the Sixers' next five games with a left hip injury. Dedmon was upgraded to questionable ahead of the Sixers’ road matchup Saturday night with the top-seeded Bucks.
“Dewayne brings a versatile, tough big guy that is super vocal," PJ Tucker said of Dedmon on Feb. 23. “That’s why me and him have always been good, because he talks just as much as me.
“He’s loud and he’s got an aggressive voice. And he’s been around; he knows how to play. I think having those kind of guys on the bench who can come in different nights and help us out, it’s going to be huge for us down the stretch.”