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Rumor: Sixers would be willing to work with Rockets on sign-and-trade if Jimmy Butler wants to leave

Jimmy Butler, Sixers, Rockets

The Houston Rockets have been relentless in their pursuit of Jimmy Butler and as it turns out, the Philadelphia 76ers wouldn’t be opposed to a sign-and-trade scenario if their two-way wing wasn’t on board with staying in the City of Brotherly Love.

According to Sam Amick of The Athletic, the Sixers would rather recoup some assets instead of potentially losing him for nothing, despite their clear intent of keeping him and Tobias Harris, who are both due for a max $190 million deal this summer.

“Houston is clearly serious about finding a way to land Butler, who grew up in nearby Tomball, Texas and who is at the top of the Rockets’ offseason wish list. As for the key question of whether the Sixers would be willing to cooperate in a possible sign-and-trade, a source with knowledge of their situation said it’s looking likely. There is, it seems, a strong desire to avoid losing him for nothing if Butler decides to head elsewhere.”

The Sixers landed Butler along with second-year big man Justin Patton from the Minnesota Timberwolves back in early November in exchange for Jerryd Bayless, Robert Covington, Dario Saric and a 2022 second-round pick. They have invested in him, which is why they would like to recoup any assets lost in that trade, should he choose to leave.

Philadelphia could have the same issue with Tobias Harris, who has gotten attention from eight other teams like the Brooklyn Nets, the Dallas Mavericks, and even his former team, the L.A. Clippers.

If Butler indeed wants to leave, it will take a pirate’s chest worth of assets to build a sign-and-trade package worthy of those $190 million Butler could make, likely forcing the Rockets to seek out a third team to help the salaries match.