Sixers trade Holiday for Noel draft rights

Jrue Holiday has been traded to New Orleans in a draft night deal that sends center Nerlens Noel to the Sixers. Credit: Getty Images Jrue Holiday has been traded to New Orleans in a draft night deal that sends center Nerlens Noel to the Sixers.
Credit: Getty Images

Sam Hinkie had been quiet since being named as the team’s president and general manager onMay 14.

Not anymore.

Hinkie pulled off a blockbuster trade, reportedly sending All-Star point guard Jrue Holiday and the No. 42 overall pick in the draft to the New Orleans Pelicans for the rights to center Nerlens Noel and a lightly protected first round pick in 2014. Noel fell from the top spot to sixth overall.

“The ownership here and the people in this organization have a commitment to build something lasting,” Hinkie said.

Exit Andrew Bynum, who never played one second in a Sixers uniform.

Enter Noel, who was starring for the University of Kentucky before suffering an anterior cruciate ligament tear in his left knee in February.

With the No. 11 overall pick, the Sixers may have found the replacement for Holiday. They took Syracuse sophomore point guard Michael Carter-Williams, who helped the Orange advance to the Final Four.

Carter-Williams and Noel are friends, going back to playing AAU basketball together.

Soon, they could be in the starting lineup together.

As a freshman at Syracuse, Carter-Williams played sparingly. He had a breakout season as a sophomore and set a school record with 111 steals.

Next up is replacing Holiday. Not an easy task.

“I think I’m ready for the challenge,” Carter-Williams said in a conference call. “I can’t wait.”

Carter-Williams suspected that the Sixers might select him. When it happened, he was obviously thrilled.

“I knew it was an option I could go there,” Carter-Williams said. “I’m real excited for it.”

With the 35thpick, the Sixers took Glen Rice Jr., formerly of Georgia Tech and then the Rio Grande Valley Vipers of the NBDL. Rice Jr. was kicked off the Georgia Tech team and then played very well in the NBDL.

But Rice Jr. had a short stay as he was reportedly being shipped to the Washington Wizards for the 38thand 54thpicks.

The Sixers chose South Dakota State guard Nate Wolters with the 38thpick. Wolters is one of four men’s basketball players in NCAA Division I history to record at least 2,000 points, 600 rebounds and 600 assists in a career.

Wolters was then – wait for it – traded.

Finally, the Sixers took Oregon forward Arsalan Kazemi with the 54thpick.

In addition to the player transactions, there were rumors that the Sixers were on the way to hiring coach Brett Brown, a former assistant with the San Antonio Spurs.

“Not true,” Hinkie said emphatically.

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