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The Sixers are going ALL IN with trade for Tobias Harris

Just like that, Philadelphia could have the best starting five in the East.

NBA: Philadelphia 76ers at Los Angeles Clippers Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Clippers have agreed to trade Tobias Harris to the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for a heap of assets, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. The six-player trade will send Landry Shamet, Wilson Chandler, Mike Muscala, the Sixers’ 2020 first-round pick (lottery protected for three years, per ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne), the Heat’s 2021 first-round pick, and the Sixers’ 2021 and 2023 second-round picks to the Clippers. The Sixers will receive Harris, Boban Marjanovic, and Mike Scott.

This is a shocker, and will surely put the Sixers among the favorites to survive a top-heavy Eastern Conference in the playoffs. A starting-five of Ben Simmons, J.J. Redick, Jimmy Butler, Tobias Harris, and Joel Embiid could be the best group outside of the Warriors.

Are the Sixers the biggest threat in the East now?

There’s an endless amount of possibility with a starting five as versatile as what Philadelphia now has. Simmons, Embiid, and Butler can guard most positions, and Redick and Harris are two of the best floor-spacers in the East.

With this trade, Philadelphia improves on what it lacked: three-point shooting. Scott is shooting 38 percent from distance this season, and Harris a whopping 42 percent. That’s so important as Philly figures out how to perfectly use Simmons’ talents distributing the ball. Surrounding Simmons with long-range shooters should make his job that much easier.

The Sixers’ depth problem still remains, but with a starting five filled explicitly with all-star or all-star-adjacent talent, that may not matter all that much in the playoffs when deep rotations are cut. The Bucks, Raptors and Celtics should be more concerned with seeing this team in the second-round of the playoffs now.

This could be the Sixers’ core of the future, too

According to Wojnarowski, the Sixers have plans to re-sign both Harris and Butler, who are set to become free agents this summer, and keep the rest of the gang, too. Should Philly fall short this season, their new Big Four will be well young to compete for the foreseeable future. Butler will be 30, Harris, 27, Embiid, 25, and Simmons, 23, next season.

This group has more than one chance to figure it all out should everyone remain healthy and be willing to stay in town. It’s a move for the now and the near-future in Philly.

This is a big move for the Clippers, too

LA has been in contention for big-name free agents, and it’s gearing up to one day add one. Kawhi Leonard had them on his list of potential places he’d sign long-term with before he was traded to the Raptors, and even more recently, Anthony Davis added them to his expanded list.

Now they have the young assets to negotiate. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is having a stellar rookie season, Montrezl Harrell is one of the best budget role players in the league, and there’s potential in Jerome Robinson, Landry Shamet, and the horde of new picks coming LA’s way. That includes the coveted unprotected Heat 2021 pick.

The Clippers are signaling that they’re ready to tank this season by trading Harris, too. If they fall out of the playoff race (they’re currently the No. 8 seed in the West), they’ll get to keep their lottery-protected pick this season rather than deal it to the Celtics. That’s another chip to the stack.

This is a win-win deal for both teams headed in the opposite direction.