Philadelphia 76ers center Nerlens Noel has been discussed as a potential trade target for the Portland Trail Blazers. The third-year big man was recovering from minor knee surgery in the early season and is now stuck behind several other talented players like Joel Embiid and Jahlil Okafor in the 76ers depth chart.
On Wednesday Adrian Wojnarowski discussed Noel’s trade value on The Vertical podcast with Bobby Marks. He said that the teams looking into trading for Noel are not so impressed with the 22-year-old:
The research teams have done on him is not good. They don’t get good reports back on their intel of how he carried himself there, of his habits—it’s not a great return. There are teams willing to do a deal for him and bring him in, but they don’t want to give up much. So at some point Philly’s got to make a decision—what’s the best we can get for him. I think at some point he probably moves.
Noel played in only his second game of the season for the 76ers last night. He scored two points and pulled in five rebounds in eight minutes. After the game, Noel expressed his displeasure with his limited playing time:
He scored eight points in 10 minutes during his season debut on Sunday. Last season Noel averaged 11.1 points and 8.1 rebounds per game. He was drafted sixth overall in the 2013 but missed his entire rookie with a torn ACL.
It’s tough to say if Noel’s bad habits are more a part of who he is or more a byproduct of being with an organization that has not valued winning for his entire career. He’s still young, and being part of a more stable culture could help mitigate some of the concerns Wojnarowski discussed.
Let us know what you think. Does Wojnarowski’s report give you any hesitation about the Blazers trading for Noel?