Although the 76ers are in no rush to trade Markelle Fultz, team ownership is split on what it should do with the 2017 No. 1 pick, Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirerreports.
Since the team traded up two picks and gave away another first-round pick in order to get Fultz coming out of Washington, some would prefer to keep the 20-year-old on the roster to see if he can still develop into what he was expected to be when he entered the draft. Additionally, the team does not want to take back such a small return after investing so much into Fultz, especially out of the fear he could blossom into something much more than he was in his first 33 games in Philadelphia.
The 76ers are looking to get back more than a late first-round pick for Fultz, and there are about 10 teams potentially interested in the injured guard, Pompey reports. The Pistons are one of three teams to have reportedly reached out to Philadelphia about acquiring Fultz, but there have been no serious discussions regarding a potential trade.
Pompey also mentioned, the Magic, Suns and Heat as teams with the makeup of a squad that could be interested in Fultz. Teams without cap space who might not attract free agents or be in position to sign people this offseason who could wait to see what Fultz develops into by the end of next season. Fultz is set to make $9.7 million next season and a team would need to pick up his fourth-year option by October to keep him around through 2020-21.
For the 76ers, there is no desire to force a deal with Fultz's trade value so low. The guard is currently sitting out with a nerve condition—thoracic outlet syndrome—and could be sidelined until about Jan. 15.
Since the 76ers have an open roster spot, they could still bring somebody in before or after the Feb. 7 trade deadline even without moving anybody. But, they could also try to position themselves financially so they could re-sign Jimmy Butler this upcoming offseason and go after another quality free agent.
At 19-11, Philadelphia is fourth in the East entering Sunday. It plays the Cavaliers on the road Sunday.