The Philadelphia 76ers should trade Markelle Fultz for D’Angelo Russell

(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images) /
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Philadelphia 76ers
(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /

Russell’s fit in Philly

No matter who the Philadelphia 76ers offer to trade Markelle Fultz for, Bryan Colangelo‘s initial decision to select him first overall, giving up an additional Assets in the process, will go down in history as one of the worst draft trades of all time.

But just because the Sixers won’t get even value for Fultz, maybe ever, doesn’t mean they can’t procure some benefit for his services.

Much like Fultz, Russell also carries with him some serious draft pedigree, and at 6-foot-5, he too could be an ineffective combo guard next to Ben Simmons.

Are Russell’s stats mind-boggling? No, but his career stat line of 14.7 points, 4.3 assists, and 35 shooting percentage from 3-point range are all noticeably better than Fultz’s numbers, and at only 22, a marked improvement from season to season does not appear to be any sort of fluke associated with being the best player on a terrible team.

Does Russell potentially benefit from some garbage minute scoring? Sure, that sort of stat-stuffing happens all over the league, especially by players entering contract years, but a player isn’t going to average 16.5 points, five assists, and 1.1 steals a game in the fourth quarter alone. After having shown an ability to be effective both on and off the ball either as a ball dominant point guard, or paired with another lanky, ball dominant backcourt mate like Spencer Dinwiddie, it’s clear Russell is one of the more flexible guards in the league, which could be a major asset for a team like the 76ers, who deploy one of the weirdest starting fives in league history.

With Russell in the fold, the Sixer could diversify their potential lineups even further with yet another playmaker capible of logging minutes at  multiple positions both in the starting five, or coming off the bench. In some sets, the 76ers could even trot out Russell, Redick, and Simmons onto the court at the same time, deploying a more traditional lineup with Big Ben at the four.

If the Philadelphia 76ers are serious about winning now, or at least winning within the next few seasons, why waste half of the game with Fultz in the lineup when a player like Russell could fill the same role, but well?

Furthermore, by sending Fultz to the Nets, the Philadelphia 76ers could actually help his career moving forward.