Report: Sixers Actually Want Guy They Traded for to Play for Them

A Yahoo! Sports report says the 76ers are attempting to get Andrei Kirilenko — recently acquired in a trade with the Nets — to report to the team.

Per Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski, the 76ers actually want Andrei Kirilenko to report to the team. This not quite a #WojBomb, per se, perhaps more like a #WojFirecracker.

Still, it is interesting. The Sixers traded for Kirilenko – who had fallen out of the Nets’ rotation this year — as a way to help Brooklyn clear salary. In exchange, the Sixers got a second-round pick in 2020 and the right to swap second-round picks in 2018.

As the team has done in previous deals, the Sixers were expected to waive Kirilenko. They had no use for a player who was any good!

Plus, Kirilenko’s been dealing with a family issue in New York concerning his wife. He said earlier in the year it would keep him off road trips. “Sometimes our personal life is more than our basketball life. This is one of those situations that requires a lot of my time home. Which we reached an agreement with the Nets: Sometimes I’ll be helping my wife,” he told reporters earlier this month. Understandable. There was not much the Sixers could do but release him, it seemed like.

Except Wojnarowski reports the Sixers want Kirilenko to report to the team, in an attempt to showcase him for a potential trade to a contender closer to the February 19th trade deadline. Kirilenko has said he may be able to return to a full schedule later in the season. The report says the Sixers are willing to accommodate Kirilenko.

Woj says Kirilenko doesn’t want to report to the Sixers — he wants the freedom to sign with any club, in addition to the $3.3 million owed to him for this season. It seems the Sixers’ chances at a deal are a long-shot: Teams are understandably reluctant to trade for a guy they know will be waived after the trade deadline if nobody picks him up.

[Yahoo! Sports]