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Sixers rumors: Raptors have "approached" Philadelphia about Nerlens Noel

By: Brandon Apter, managing editor

NBA free agency begins tomorrow, July 1, and the Philadelphia 76ers will be looking to add a veteran guard and some other pieces. The team is also likely to be active on the trade market with their surplus of big men. Although it is unclear whether or not Joel Embiid will ever make a full recovery and become the superstar most believe he can be, the Sixers seem set on trading either Nerlens Noel or Jahlil Okafor.

While they were unable to get a deal done on draft night, both Okafor and Noel possess strong value with Jahlil offering more on the offensive end and Nerlens on defense. It looked as if Noel was more of an interest on draft night, but Bryan Colangelo reiterated after the first round that no deals were close.

The Boston Celtics were the team that Philadelphia was reportedly in heavy talks with, but the Toronto Raptors have potentially emerged as a suitor for Nerlens Noel, according to Zach Lowe of ESPN.

Toronto has already approached Philly about a deal sending out a rotation player -- perhaps Terrence Ross, and other goodies -- in exchange for Nerlens Noel, who could then assume Biyombo's backup center role, according to league sources. The talks haven't gained much traction yet.

This past season for the Sixers, Noel averaged a strong 11.1 points, 8.1 rebounds, 1.5 blocks and and 1.8 steals per game despite issues co-existing on the court with rookie center Jahlil Okafor.

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