The last two weeks have been not short on drama in the NBA.
The latest major move in the league came Thursday night as ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported a trade between the Thunder and Rockets that will send Russell Westbrook to Houston.
The Oklahoma City Thunder have agreed to trade Russell Westbrook to the Houston Rockets for Chris Paul, first-round picks in 2024 and 2026, pick swaps in 2021 and 2025, league sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 12, 2019
According to The Athletic's Sam Amick, Paul might be on the move again soon, with Miami a possible destination.
Source, to the @TheAthletic: Chris Paul's agent, Leon Rose, will talk to OKC GM Sam Presti in the coming days to determine what's next. If CP wants to go to Miami to join Jimmy Butler, it's clear there's a deal to be done there. The Thunder would engage and have interest.
— Sam Amick (@sam_amick) July 12, 2019
As far as the Sixers are concerned, the immediate focus will remain on winning the Eastern Conference - a goal James Ennis is very confident they can achieve (see story).
Paul and Jimmy Butler teaming up in Miami would certainly be interesting, though it's difficult to analyze the threat they'd pose at this stage without knowing what the Heat would be giving up in a hypothetical deal.
If Westbrook and James Harden manage to gel along with Eric Gordon, P.J. Tucker, Clint Capela and company, the Rockets could be another contender in the West. However, the ball-dominant duo does not appear to be the most natural fit. The pair played together with Oklahoma City from 2009-2012.
A footnote for the Sixers is that the team owns the Thunder's 2020 first-round pick, which is protected 1 to 20. If the pick does not convey in 2020, it will become Oklahoma City's second-round picks in 2022 and 2023. Given that the focus for Oklahoma City general manager Sam Presti seems to be more on building for the future than contending in the present, the latter scenario appears much more likely.
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