Damian Lillard and the Bucks were too much for Joel Embiid and the Sixers to handle in their first game of the 2023-24 season, which is likely the outcome the New York Knicks brass hoped for.
Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer reported earlier this week that Embiid is New York’s top priority (subscription required). Reportedly, the Knicks are willing to offer Julius Randle, RJ Barrett, Mitchell Robinson, Evan Fournier, and a few first-round picks if the star center hits the trade market.
Pompey reiterated that Embiid is committed to winning a championship in Philadelphia, and SNY’s Ian Begley echoed that. As for the reported trade package, Begley wrote:
"They added that, in general, Philadelphia was unmoved by the reported package for Embiid.“They didn’t take it seriously,” one person said of the Sixers, and some close to Embiid, in reference to the proposed package."
Sixers reportedly ‘unmoved’ by Knicks’ trade package for star Joel Embiid
New York Daily News’ Kristian Winfield reported on Oct. 24 that according to league sources, the belief is that if Joel Embiid does request a trade, it’ll happen in the offseason (subscription required).
It’s impossible to guess what Philadelphia’s roster will look like in two weeks, much less what it’ll look like next summer. James Harden missed the Sixers’ first game and will miss the second after being away from the team due to a reported personal matter. Just because he’s back in Philly doesn’t mean it’ll be smooth sailing.
The sooner the Sixers can trade Harden, the better. Daryl Morey has stood firm in his desire to get enough in return for the disgruntled guard to keep Philadelphia in contention. Embiid’s future is at stake.
Maybe an Embiid trade request will come next summer, or maybe not. It wouldn’t be a shock if one came before the February trade deadline, as a lot can go wrong in the next three months. If that happens, what’s reported about the trade negotiations will be very interesting.
If Morey isn’t satisfied with New York’s reported trade package, that’s already a sign that it’ll be a battle for the Knicks to get the reigning MVP. Remember what things were like a year ago in the Donovan Mitchell negotiations? It’s never easy to trade for a star, and that won’t change with Joel Embiid.