If there's one thing Daryl Morey doesn't much care for doing as the general manager of the Philadelphia 76ers, it's using his draft picks.

Sure, he'll select a player from time to time to help fill out the roster like Jaden Springer, and has been darn good at identifying talent all over the board and even in undrafted free agency, with Ricky Council IV looking like a serious player for the squad moving forward, but not since Tyrese Maxey, Isaiah Joe, and Paul Reed came off the board for Philly in 2021 has the team made an impactful selection in a draft that remain on the team to this day, what with only having a few players under contract and whatnot.

Could 2024 be the different? Could Morey see a player like Duke shooter Jared McCain and say that he is the definition of a Philadelphia 76er? Maybe so, but more likely, he will move the pick for an immediate difference-maker in the 25-28 age range like he did with De'Anthony Melton in 2022 in the hopes of upgrading the top-8 right out of the jump.

Fortunately, if acquiring an immediate contributor is Morey's desire, then he's in luck, as there are some very good players who could be available at the draft, and not just ones like Brandon Ingram, who could cost a ton with no guarantee they upgrade the spot more than a more schematically appropriate role player with skills that complement Joel Embiid and Masey on the wings.

Two players the Sixers could acquire with pick 16 in the 2024 Draft.

Philadelphia 76ers forward Nicolas Batum (40) controls the ball as Toronto Raptors forward Bruce Brown (11) tries to defend during the third quarter at Scotiabank Arena.
Mar 31, 2024; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Philadelphia 76ers forward Nicolas Batum (40) controls the ball as Toronto Raptors forward Bruce Brown (11) tries to defend during the third quarter at Scotiabank Arena. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

2. Bruce Brown

Of the various players who could be moved on draft night, the easiest one to imagine has to be Bruce Brown leaving the great white north of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, for the greener pastures of the US of A.

On paper, there isn't a team in the NBA that couldn't use Brown, including the Denver Nuggets, who were unable to keep him originally in free agency due to his incredibly robust market, but the Sixers are one of the few contending teams in the Association who can actually shoulder his $23 million cap hit in a trade without having to give back matching salary, but could use such a deal to free up even more money if they see fit.

Say, for example, the 76ers didn't like what they saw in Paul Reed during the playoffs and would rather find a new backup for Embiid in former teammate Andre Drummond, who remains a true fan favorite years after being sent to the Brooklyn Nets and then signing with the Chicago Bulls in free agency.

In such a situation, the 76ers could likely package pick 16 and Reed in a deal with the Raptors for Brown and a second-round pick, either in 2024, where Toronto owns pick 31, or in the future. Such a deal wouldn't save the team any money but would eliminate the need to acquire a player like, say, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope at $20-plus million and could instead target a difference maker on the win, a veteran playmaker on a good contract, and/or some of their key free agents, be that Nicolas Batum, Kelly Oubre, Kyle Lowry, and/or Cameron Payne.

Would it be a tad underwhelming to take the highest draft pick the Sixers have had in years and use it on a veteran player who can do a lot of things pretty well but isn't elite at any one aspect of the game? Maybe so, adding a knockdown shooter, a savant passer, or an elite defender with multi-position versatility may feel better than in the moment, but having a pick like 31 with much fewer financial restrictions may be beneficial to the Sixers' team-building strategy moving forward, and Brown could remain a walking trade exception who could stick around in Philly as a gritty two guard who is a plus rebounder and can run the second unit or be moved for something better a few months later if a better option comes around.

The deal: pick 16 and Paul Reed for Bruce Brown and pick 31

1. Cameron Johnson

When it comes to potential trade targets on the 76ers' radar, few options are as popular with the general fanbase as Mikal Bridges, the former Villanova legend who was technically on the team for a few minutes but was ultimately traded to the Phoenix Suns for Miami's 2021 first-round pick and Zhaire Smith, who spent last season with the Cleveland Charge.

Could Brooklyn throw up their hands and give up the proverbial gun, sending out Bridges for a massive draft pick haul? Sure thing, but even if they remain wary of pulling the trigger in favor of finding a piece like Donovan Mitchell who could change their favors with a blink of an eye – and a max contract – they might be willing to move off of the next best thing: Cameron Johnson.

Standing 6-foot-8, 210 pounds with long arms and a soft touch, Johnson is a career 39.2 percent three-point shooter who can rebound the ball decently well, keep the offense going with rapid ball movement, and ultimately make quick decisions to capitalize on what's available. While he may not be the best defender in the Association, he isn't awful either and could provide enough gravity as a volume shooter to make up for his deficiencies on-ball, which might not even be that debilitating, what with Embiid in the paint to clean up everyone's problems.

If you liked what Batum brought to the table in 2023-24 but wished he was 28, then you are in luck, as Johnson could potentially fill that role and remain a viable part of Philly's core for the remainder of Embiid's prime.

During the 2023-24 season, both at the draft and at the trade deadline, Johnson was likely untouchable, but after having a down season in 2023-24 versus his initial run in Brooklyn, seeing his points-per-game drop 3.2 points for the Nets on similar efficiency, he might just be available for the right price, and the 76ers could likely bring Johnson and the remainder of his four-year, $108 million contract into the fray for, say pick 16 and the team's 2026 first-round pick, which will come from either Oklahoma City, Houston, or the Los Angeles Clippers, depending on record.

The deal: 16 and a 2026 OKC/Houston/LAC 1st for Cameron Johnson