Jahlil Okafor wasn’t on the team plane when the Philadelphia 76ers left for Monday’s game against the Charlotte Hornets, prompting widespread speculation that he was soon to be traded. Okafor has remained a Sixer over the past two days, and now he will be back with his teammates in Boston.
Multiple outlets covering the Sixers reported on Tuesday that Okafor, the No. 3 overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, will be present for his team’s matchup against the Celtics.
What this means for his future in Philadelphia is still uncertain. The 76ers have a logjam in the frontcourt with Nerlens Noel, Joel Embiid, and Okafor. That’s not even mentioning Ben Simmons, who will apparently play a large role as a member of the backcourt but is sure to see time at the 3 and 4 spots as well.
Okafor is still a commodity and there’s tons of time left before the Feb. 23 trade deadline to get a deal done. Rumor last time out was that Okafor was shaking hands and hugging folks goodbye at Philadelphia’s arena, and that both the Chicago Bulls and Indiana Pacers were in talks with the Sixers about the young big man.
Those talks would contextually appear to have fizzled, especially if Okafor suits and plays for the 76ers again.
Give it time. The NBA trade deadline is notoriously weird, and you can’t count anything out up until the exact moment it’s over for something big to go down. The Sixers still have to live with their frontcourt issues for the time being.