Sixers Have Shown Interest in Kings Stretch Big, Nemanja Bjelica
The 76ers have expressed interest in the 32 year old stretch big, Nemanja Bjelica. The Kings have been on a royal skid over the last 3 weeks, losing 11 of their previous 12 games, and could be looking to ship Bjelica in exchange for draft compensation to commit more heavily to the youth movement. This isn’t the first time that the Sixers have been linked to the Serbian sharpshooter as we know, but maybe this could be the time that they actually corral the elusive Bjelica.
Bjelica fits the archetype of what the Sixers are looking for in a lot of ways, he is a career 39% three point shooter and averages eight points per game for his career as a 6’11 stretch big. The evidence proves that the 76ers struggle with games where Dwight Howard has to play extended minutes with his lack of floor spacing, and lineups that include Simmons, Thybulle, and Howard have been extremely unsuccessful offensively. Bjelica is a strong shooter who hunts for the deep ball, while only shooting 31% beyond this season, but is a willing and confident shooter that could make a Ben led lineup much more efficient if he is able to open driving lanes.
It’s unclear how serious the interest is from the Sixers and Kings, but the fit is undeniable considering we have all been calling for a stretch big for a few months now. Is Bjelica the answer to the Sixers issues? Not by any means, but he is a solid option for a team that could use a player of his style. This would allow them to make a cheap move for a necessary piece like Bjelica, and leaves the door open for a larger move that could really put them over the top, whether that be Lowry or a combination of Lonzo Ball and Josh Hart. While Bjelica wouldn’t be my first choice, he definitely isn’t my last either and this would surely be an upgrade for the bench.