Why the Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris trades were great
The 2018-2019 NBA season produced 2 blockbuster trades for the 76ers, bringing in Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris via new General Manager, Elton Brand. Many have stated that these trades were horrible and that they never should have been made. But myself, on the other hand, think these were great trades and still would do them 100 times out of 100.
Lets first take a look at the Jimmy Butler trade. The 76ers moved Dario Saric and Robert Covington to Minnesota for Jimmy Butler and Justin Patton.
Minnesota has agreed to a deal to send Jimmy Butler to Philadelphia for a package that includes Robert Covington and Dario Saric, league sources tell @ZachLowe_NBA and me.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 10, 2018
I’m the biggest Robert Covington fan in Philadelphia. I was upset to see him go but it was a fantastic move for the 76ers. Dario, as much as I love him as a person, is not a good NBA player. He is a slow-footed Power Forward who honestly, should be playing the center position. The Sixers moved Dario to upgrade the SF spot from Robert Covington to Jimmy Butler. You didn’t move any draft capital and got a disgruntled All-Star for pennies on the dollar. Anytime you can make this deal you have to do it. This helped begin to push Philly into title contention and gave them their 3rd star.
Even though Jimmy left for Miami in the summer they were able to move him for Josh Richardson, who is a great all-around SG for the 76ers and a hard-working player. Even if the trade was Covington and Dario for Richardson. Getting Jimmy Butler for a good chuck of the season last year was great too. The Sixers were not going to extend Dario so it allowed them to free up his contract and Covington’s long term deal as well. From a pure value standpoint, Philadelphia got away with highway robbery on this one.
While that trade gets some backlash, the Tobias trade was met with greater criticism. The 76ers sent Los Angeles Landry Shamet, Mike Muscala, Wilson Chandler their 2020 1st round pick, and Miami’s 2021 1st with 2 Detroit 2nds.
Sources: Clippers and Sixers have agreed to trade Tobias Harris, Boban Marjanovic, Mike Scott for Landry Shamet, Wilson Chandler, Mike Muscala, 2020 first-rounder, 2021 unprotected 1st via Miami and two second rounders.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 6, 2019
This was an incredible trade for the 76ers. Literally highway robbery. They moved 2 benchwarmer’s in Chandler and Muscala and their pick in the 2020 draft. All indications seem to be pointing to a weak draft class anyways. The only things of value were Landry Shamet and the Miami 2021 pick. While the pick was heavily coveted at the time, the Miami Heat have turned themselves into a good, young team and that pick is likely to be in the 20s. The Sixers moved a decent shooter and a bunch of shitty assets for a near All-Star player, who does everything you ask of him, and even more bench pieces. That is absolutely incredible and doesn’t get the credit it deserves.
As mentioned above, Tobias is fantastic in his role with the 76ers and gets so much unnecessary hate for his play. He was signed to a 5-year max to be the third option, score 20 PPG, and be a solid defender and he has done all of that exactly.
So for those that are upset that he is doing that, why?
Often 76ers fans tend to hate for the sake of hating but Tobias has done everything asked of him and has recently been outstanding off the court with his actions of donating to those in need during the pandemic and protesting in support of Black Lives Matter.
Sixers forward Tobias Harris among those marching and protesting in Philadelphia today in honor of George Floyd
Harris also has Sixers teammate Mike Scott on FaceTime
📸 via @tobias31 @6abc #GeorgeFloyd pic.twitter.com/GN8e36fZkM
— Jeff Skversky 6abc (@JeffSkversky) May 30, 2020
Looking back on everything that has happened after a season, I still stand by the fact that both of these trades were fantastic deals and I would not take either back if I was given the chance.