Philadelphia 76ers: Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot has found new life in Chicago

(Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
(Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /

Already on his third team this season, has former Philadelphia 76ers wing Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot finally found a home in Chicago?

Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot has had a very strange 2018-19 season.

After initially preparing to enter his third professional season with the Philadelphia 76ers, TLC was traded to the  Oklahoma City Thunder as part of a 3-way deal that sent Justin Anderson and Carmelo Anthony to the Atlanta Hawks, and Mike Muscala to the City of Brotherly Love.

However, the pairing never really meshed.

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In 21 games of action, including one start, TLC only averaged 1.7 points a game in 5.7 minutes of action a night.

Now those numbers aren’t great, but when you couple them with 22 DNPs between December and January, it became abundantly clear that Cabarrot’s tenure on the team formerly known as the Seattle SuperSonic was rapidly approaching its end.

That ending came on February 1st, when Oklahoma City shipped the 23-year-old guard/forward to Chicago in exchange for a 2020 second-round pick.

On the surface, the move made sense for both parties, as shedding TLC’s contract from the payroll helped to facilitate Markeef Morris‘ addition on the buyout market, and it gave the Bulls yet another young player to develop moving forward, but the real winner of the trade had to be Luwawu-Cabarrot himself, as it looks like he’s finally found a home in the NBA.

Though his tenure with the team has been abbreviated, as he’s only appeared in eight games so far this season, TLC has played unexpectedly well in the Second City, averaging six points and 2.6 rebounds in about 16 minutes of action a night.

Once again, those numbers aren’t great, but they are a considerable improvement over Cabarrot’s production in OKC, and rival his career highs in points, rebounds, and minutes from all the way back in his 2016-17 rookie season with your friendly neighborhood Philadelphia 76ers.

Granted, when it comes to ESPN’s Real Plus-Minus stats, TLC still isn’t great, as he’s currently the third worst offensive shooting guard in the entire NBA and only an average defender, but on a team like the Bulls that’s not particularly important.

A shooting guard who can’t really shoot? That’s not good, but the Bulls kind of specialize in players who aren’t particularly well-rounded, just ask their starting backcourt of Zach LaVine and Kris Dunn, so in a way Cabarrot fits right in.

Without the pressure of chasing down a championship on his back, TLC has been awarded an opportunity that very few NBA players receive on their third team in less than a year: a chance to play meaningful minutes and focus on development.

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Will Philly one day look stupid for passing off the 6-foot-6 french guard/forward as a throw-in in a three-team trade? Only time will tell, but after OKC failed to pick up his fourth-year option last fall, there isn’t a better place in the NBA for Timothe Luwawue-Cabarrot to further develop, and showcase his skills than with the Chicago Bulls, fittingly the process-yiest team in the NBA right now.