It looks like DeMarcus Cousins wasn’t the only former Kentucky big man to be on the move this week.
On Thursday morning, just hours before the NBA trade deadline, the Philadelphia 76ers traded center Nerlens Noel to the Dallas Mavericks for Justin Anderson and a first-round pick. Adrian Wojnarowski had the news first.
Philadelphia is sending Nerlens Noel to Dallas for Justin Anderson and a first-round draft pick, league sources tell @TheVertical.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojVerticalNBA) February 23, 2017
ESPN’s Marc Stein added that Andrew Bogut would be on the move as well.
Andrew Bogut is in the trade to Philadelphia and Dallas' pick is protected 1-to-18 in the June draft, league sources say— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) February 23, 2017
Then, Woj mentioned that the Mavs are interested in keeping Noel long-term. He’s a restricted free agent after this season.
The Mavericks have long been intrigued with Noel, and will work to sign him to an extension. Noel's a restricted free agent.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojVerticalNBA) February 23, 2017
Noel missed his entire rookie season (2013-14) with a torn ACL he suffered at Kentucky. In the time since, he has been a serviceable NBA player, averaging 10.2 points and 7.6 rebounds per game in 170 career games.