Langston Galloway

NBA trade rumors: Pistons' Luke Kennard, Langston Galloway would be perfect fits for Sixers

NBA trade rumors: Pistons' Luke Kennard, Langston Galloway would be perfect fits for Sixers

Their brutal loss to the Mavericks Saturday was more proof that the Sixers need to trade for a shooter — or two.

They shot a season-worst 37.8 from the field and 9 of 37 from three. On the season, the Sixers are 13th in the league percentage wise but just 23rd when it comes to makes. Brett Brown has said he’d like his team to attempt more, but simply may not have enough capable shooters.

The pieces are there for the Sixers to be a defensive bully, but they need to score points in order to win games.

GM Elton Brand is likely working the phones in earnest with the Feb. 6 trade deadline rapidly approaching. The report that the Sixers have interest in the Pistons’ Luke Kennard and Langston Galloway should come as no surprise. Both players would fill that need and be great fits.

We’ll start with Kennard because he’s the more attractive piece. The 12th overall pick in the 2017 draft out of Duke, the 23-year-old has improved in each of his NBA seasons. He’s a sharpshooter, hitting 39.9 percent on 6.5 attempts from three this season and shooting over 40 percent for his career from beyond the arc. Kennard also has decent ability off the bounce, averaging 4.1 assists a game and excelling in the pick-and-roll. Defense is going to be a concern, but he’d instantly become the Sixers’ best offensive threat off the bench. 

There are issues in attempting to acquire Kennard. The biggest is that he’s missed the last 10 games with tendinitis in both knees. It’s an issue he’s been dealing with since the summer and the team recently decided to shut him down. He also wouldn’t be cheap to acquire. He’s in the third year of his rookie deal and the Pistons may be inclined to keep him. Without knowing his medical condition, it’s tough to say the Sixers should give up some of their better trade chips.

While Galloway wouldn’t be on the level of landing Kennard, the Saint Joseph’s product would be the safer bet. He’s also having a damn good season, shooting 39.6 percent from deep while being on pace to take the most threes of his career. He’s a combo guard that’s more of small two (6-foot-1), but he’s built solidly and has a bulldog mentality defensively. The 28-year-old is on the final year of his deal at $7.3 million. The price to land him shouldn’t be exorbitant.

The better idea may be to try and get both. The Sixers are trying to win a title and it looks like they’re a bench piece or two away. It would be extra beneficial if the players they acquired could shoot. The combo of Kennard and Galloway would be a decent get and at the very least would give Brown more options.

There will be other options and plenty of other names they’ll be linked to, but the Sixers could do much worse than landing Kennard or Galloway … or both.

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NBA trade deadline: What Andre Drummond trade talks could mean for Sixers

NBA trade deadline: What Andre Drummond trade talks could mean for Sixers

With the report that the Pistons are having discussions on big man Andre Drummond, it appears that Detroit may be open for business.

The Sixers need some bench help and GM Elton Brand said at his media availability on Christmas that he’ll “always look at opportunities to improve the team.”

With that in mind, we take a look at a few Pistons that could realistically interest the Sixers.

Luke Kennard 

Kennard could be one of the players Detroit would like to hold on to, but it’s certainly worth a phone call. The 2017 lottery pick can offer the one thing the Sixers desperately need: Shooting. The 23-year-old is hitting just a tick under 40 percent on 6.5 attempts from three a game this season. He also offers a little bit off the bounce and isn’t a bad passer (4.1 assists a game). If he can play passable defense, he’d be a great get and an obvious upgrade. He's in just the third year of his rookie deal so it could be tough to pry him away.

Langston Galloway

Galloway is taking 5.1 catch-and-shoot threes per game, and he’s making 40.7 percent of them. The St. Joe’s product, who’s in the final season of a three-year, $21 million deal with Detroit, would boost the Sixers’ shooting and scoring off the bench. He has much more of an NBA track record than Furkan Korkmaz and Shake Milton. 

Derrick Rose 

In 2016, Rose and two friends were found not guilty of sexual battery, battery and trespassing in a civil trial. The allegations, what Rose had to say in his deposition, and the fact that smiling jurors posed with Rose after the trial are all worth noting. 

As far as basketball is concerned, the 31-year-old Rose is a player the Sixers might consider because of his shot creation abilities. Rose, the MVP for the 2010-11 season, is averaging 16.7 points and 5.9 assists.

Markieff Morris 

A Philadelphia native, Morris is having a career-best season from three-point range (41.1 percent on 4.2 attempts per game). The 6-foot-8 forward has a $3.2 million salary this season and a $3.36 million player option for 2020-21. Morris was a teammate of Mike Scott with the Wizards and would bring a similar skill set and no-nonsense disposition. He'd be an upgrade over Scott. 

Allen Crabbe 

No, Crabbe does not currently play for the Pistons, but his contract could be used by the Hawks in a deal to match Drummond’s money. If that does happen, Crabbe would be a decent buyout candidate. The 27-year-old has had his struggles over the past couple seasons but was a standout for Portland when he first broke into the league. He’s a 38.9 percent career shooter from three. On a minimum deal for the rest of the season, he could be worth a flyer.

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NBA trade deadline: 6 trade targets for the Sixers

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USA Today Images/AP Images

NBA trade deadline: 6 trade targets for the Sixers

We've reached Dec. 15, a significant date in the NBA calendar. It's the first day that most players who signed this summer are eligible to be traded

NBC Sports Philadelphia's Paul Hudrick and Noah Levick look at six players who might make sense for the Sixers to target. The trade deadline is Feb. 6. 

Josh Hart, G/F

Most basketball fans in Philadelphia will be familiar with the name. Hart had an impressive career at Villanova, helping the Wildcats to a national championship. After starting his career with the Lakers, he was part of the Anthony Davis trade and wound up in New Orleans. With a Brandon Ingram extension likely, it would be a cost-cutting move for the Pelicans

Hart can do a little bit of everything. He’s athletic, has a decent handle, is a strong rebounder at 6-foot-5 (7.8 per 36 minutes) and is shooting the ball decently (36.5 percent on 6.1 attempts). He’s still just 24 so it’s reasonable to suggest he could get better — especially if he’s surrounded by players like the Sixers’. His defensive versatility and ability to hit shots are likely the most attractive qualities he has.

Bogdan Bogdanovic, G

The 2014 first-round pick is playing some of the best basketball of his young career over the last few weeks. He can create off the dribble and navigate pick-and-rolls well as a ball handler and is even better moving off the ball. While the jumper will stand out (38.6 percent on 6.9 attempts a game), he’s also an excellent passer, averaging 3.9 assists a night.

The defensive end is where you worry about Bogdanovic, but there are signs he may be improving in that regard. He has good length at 6-foot-6 and decent feet. With the Sixers’ defensive prowess, it could help mitigate those concerns. 

So, why could such a useful player be available? Money and fit. Multiple players on the Kings have gotten paid and De’Aaron Fox is up next. With Fox and Buddy Hield, it's hard to see his long-term fit.

Alec Burks, G/F

As a low-risk/high-reward signing, Burks was expected to add a scoring punch to the Warriors’ bench as they looked to cost effectively retool their roster. Instead, Golden State has been crushed by injuries and finds itself with the worst record in the NBA. Burks has been solid in stepping up into a larger role. He looks recovered from the injuries that plagued him over the last several seasons.

Still just 28, Burks can flat out score. He hasn’t been the most efficient player (43.2 percent from the floor, 35.7 from three), but just has a knack for creating and scoring — not skills prevalent on the Sixers’ roster. Though it’s not the sexiest skillset in today’s NBA, Burks excels in the midrange and is an excellent free throw shooter (89.7 percent). Like Bogdanovic, Burks isn’t the best defender, but offers good size and length.

Davis Bertans, F

Bertans was involved in a complicated situation during free agency in which he was dealt from the Spurs to the Wizards with the understanding that San Antonio would then sign Marcus Morris. At the last minute, Morris reneged on his agreement and decided to sign with the Knicks. 

“That was an unfortunate situation that was handled unprofessionally on a couple of different levels,” Gregg Popovich told reporters in September. “We made that move to make the signing that we did and got blindsided. Davis was a special player, as we all know. He’s young and getting better and better. We hated losing him.”

In his fourth NBA season, the Latvian forward is having an elite shooting year. He’s averaging 15.7 points per game, is ninth in three-point percentage among players with at least 45 attempts (45.6 percent) and is 12th in three-point shots taken per game (8.5).

Outside shooting hasn’t been a significant problem for the Sixers, at least in terms of efficiency — they’re hitting 37 percent from three. Bertans, though, would provide some of the off-ball movement, respect from opposing defenses and ability to hit tightly contested jumpers that the Sixers lost in JJ Redick. 

Bertans’ salary for this year is $7 million, and he’ll be a free agent after the season.

Jordan Clarkson, G

According to SI.com’s Sam Amcico, the Sixers are “supposedly among those with interest” in Clarkson.

The 27-year-old Clarkson is averaging 14.3 points and 2.5 assists in 22.6 minutes per game for the 6-20 Cavs. He’d be able to give the Sixers scoring and shot creation off the bench.

However, it seems like it would be difficult for Elton Brand to acquire Clarkson for an appropriate price because the 6-foot-4 guard has a salary of close to $13.5 million for 2019-20.

Langston Galloway, G

Galloway, the No. 2 scorer in St. Joe’s history, could be a decent fit with the Sixers.

Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press reported during the preseason that the Pistons were “very open” to trading Galloway

Through the Pistons’ first 26 games, Galloway, who’s in the final season of a three-year, $21 million contract, has boosted his value a bit. He's averaging career highs in points (11.9), field goal percentage (44.8) and three-point percentage (42.9). 

“Langston is a pro," Pistons head coach Dwane Casey said, per The Athletic's James L. Edwards III. "He’s a security blanket. He’s always doing the right thing, whether he makes a shot or misses a shot. He’s always making the right play. The other side of Langston (is) his defensive ability. If you notice, we put him on the hot players because he’s a tough guy, he’s consistent and persistent. His shooting is the ultimate crown on top.”

Sounds like someone who could help a contender.

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