Despite having a relatively quiet NBA offseason, rumors have swirled around the New York Knicks about them being a potential landing spot for a superstar in the near future. Several stars have been linked to the Knicks in recent weeks, but one rumor has persisted. Philadelphia 76ers superstar Joel Embiid has yet to ask for a trade, but if he does, then the Knicks have been rumored to be near the top of his wish list.
Now comes reporting from Sixers beat writer Keith Pompey that the Knicks would be willing to give up a king’s ransom to acquire the reigning MVP. That hypothetical trade package would include R.J. Barrett, Julius Randle, Mitchell Robinson, and Evan Fournier in exchange for Joel Embiid, in addition to two or three first-round picks.
NBA Rumors: Knicks willing to offer a small fortune in assets for Joel Embiid.
Assuming that Pompey is right, that would be a terrific haul for the Sixers if and when Embiid asks to be traded. Of course, the Sixers would prefer to have Embiid for the long haul, though that will depend on how they navigate the James Harden situation and what they receive in return for the disgruntled star.
If they manage to turn Harden into another star and give Embiid a roster that is good enough to compete for a championship, then that would dramatically decrease the chance that he asks out. However, if the Harden saga drags on and they don’t get a good return for the second-best player, then Embiid’s next team could very well be the Knicks. After all, they have plenty of assets and could even offer more than the rumored offer if needed.
No matter what, it seems unlikely that the Knicks would be able to trade for Embiid this season. Instead, Embiid will probably play out this year and see if the Sixers can use their cap space next summer to build around him. If they are unable to then the Knicks could be Embiid’s backup plan.