The ‘Should the Sixers Trade Nerlens Noel?’ Flow Chart
With the NBA's 2017 trade deadline rapidly approaching, the Philadelphia 76ers - and General Manager Bryan Colangelo specifically - are facing a couple of difficult decisions regarding their current crop of players.
Fourth-year F/C Nerlens Noel in particular is an interesting case, as Noel is headed for restricted free agency following the '17 season, and will likely be on the receiving end of some high-end offers on the open market.
Thus, the organization's decision on whether or not to trade Noel before the February 23rd 3:00 PM E.T. deadline should depend entirely on how the Sixers - and Noel- feel about his place in the franchise moving forward.
Check out the below flow chart for reference:
The Sixers' decision is actually relatively easy here. If the team is interested, and willing to bring Noel back - despite what is projected to be a hefty price tag - and Noel himself is alright with accepting what mainly amounts to a back-up role as long as Joel Embiid is healthy and on the roster (something that the team would need to hear directly from Noel given his recent history as a malcontent) then you don't trade him.
The Sixers have excelled with Noel as the back-up big (a.k.a. Embiid insurance), and if the former Kentucky product is cool with this role (the minutes and money would be there, but starter status would not), then the Sixers should re-sign him this summer. If there are doubts on either end, then the team should make a move and recoup what they can for Noel before he leaves with no return in the offseason.