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Josh Giddey trade destinations: Three potential deals for Thunder guard, including Victor Wembanyama tie-up

After being selected No. 6 overall in the 2021 NBA Draft, expectations were always high for Josh Giddey. He looked like he met them early, starting every game for the Thunder during his first two years. He showed a lot of promise as a point guard with great positional size and passing.

However, Giddey’s weaknesses were on full display in his third season, as teams began ignoring him on the perimeter and stationing centers to guard him. It became such a problem that the Thunder eventually removed him from the starting lineup in their playoff series against the Mavericks, limiting him to just 12.6 minutes per game.

Giddey isn’t a bad player, but the fit doesn’t work at all in Oklahoma City. He needs the ball in his hands to be most effective, and the Thunder have much better drivers to do that in Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Jalen Williams. He has looked better in international play when he is in full control of a team’s attack.

Giddey is at an important turning point in his career. He is eligible for an extension and will be a restricted free agent in the summer of 2025 if he and the Thunder cannot reach an agreement on a deal. The writing is on the wall that the team wants to acquire him, for his own benefit as well as theirs. This is where he could end up.

MORE: Why Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Josh Giddey aren’t right for each other

Josh Giddey trade destinations

Tracks

The Spurs need an upgrade at point guard. They don’t have the plus passing to fully utilize Victor Wembanyama and the rest of their young squad.

Giddey would be a great fit for San Antonio. He could control the ball and create Spurs’ better scoring opportunities, which would also help immensely in the development of their entire squad. Giddey is a good cutter and has great vision on the field, which would fit well into the attacking style that Gregg Popovich likes to employ.

Josh Giddey Spore Trading

The Spurs are in a good spot, where they have an estimated $21.3 million in cap space, per Spotrac. They were able to take Giddey’s deal without returning a player, giving them a very low-risk opportunity in a one-year Giddey experiment. They also have a ton of future first-rounders coming in from the Dejounte Murray and DeMar DeRozan trades, so using a protected top-14 pick on a still-young prospect isn’t a problem for them.

The Thunder are also expected to have $35.3 million in cap space this summer. This would free up another $7 million for them to sign an impact free agent, and it would add a pick they could use in a potential trade.

Pressure should build for the Thunder to actively compete for a title. This brings them much closer to their goal, opening windows to get a player better than Giddey.

76ers

The 76ers are another team with a ton of cap space. Like the Spurs, they have a center in Joel Embiid who could clean up Giddey’s below-average perimeter defense. And they have two elite scoring options in Embiid and Tyrese Maxey, who Giddey could set up well.

Daryl Morey has a history of choosing talent. This would be a classic move to get him a player whose value is the lowest.

Josh Giddey Sixers trade

The Sixers have a maximum of five first-round picks to trade after the draft. They could trade the No. 16 pick in this upcoming draft after they select, which would leave them with enough to make a bigger move moving forward. Even with Giddey, they could still retain over $50 million in cap space to sign a top free agent like Paul George if he becomes available.

The Thunder benefit from this trade in the same way they would a Spurs deal: they free up cap space to sign someone else and get another young prospect to add to the team or move for a more established veteran.

MORE: Sixers offseason guide, draft picks available, trade targets

Jazz

The Jazz are still in talent acquisition mode of their current rebuild. They don’t have very good guard prospects on their roster. Kris Dunn was a nice bounce-back story, but he’s already 30 years old and doesn’t have much upside other than being a high-level backup on a good team. Keyonte George had his moments as a rookie, but is more of a scoring guard than a true point guard.

Giddey would give the team top point guard prospects and also help Utah’s young core better fit into their roles. A Giddey-Lauri Markkanen pick-and-roll would be extremely difficult to stop. And coach Will Hardy is an offensive genius whose cutting principles would be a natural fit.

Josh Giddey Thunder trade

A Giddey-for-Walker Kessler trade could give the Thunder the size they’ve been missing behind Chet Holmgren. The talented big man is one of the best rim protectors in the league, but only plays 23 minutes per game for the Jazz. This would also free up an additional $5 million for Oklahoma City to use in free agency.

The Thunder should send some sort of compensation to balance this trade. The Heat’s lottery-protected pick in 2025 would be enough to get a deal done.