According to a league source, the big man the Sixers have long coveted will be arriving in town via trade Friday morning.
The source confirmed to the Daily News that the reported deal that will bring Los Angeles Lakers 7-0, 285-pound center Andrew Bynum to the Sixers will be announced at a press conference Friday morning.
A source with direct knowledge of the talks told ESPN.com that the Denver Nuggets will get Sixers All-Star Andre Iguodala, the Lakers will receive Dwight Howard, the 76ers will get Bynum and Orlando’s Jason Richardson, and the Magic will get Denver’s Arron Afflalo, and Al Harrington, the Sixers’ Nikola Vucevic and one protected future first-round pick from each of the other three teams.
In addition, the Magic will be getting other pieces, including the 76ers’ No. 1 draft pick, Moe Harkless, a source told ESPN.
Lakers forward Pau Gasol had been in and out of talks, sources told ESPN.
Should the deal go through, it will be quite a coup for 76ers president Rod Thorn. When asked how the team can become a possible contender for a championship, three words usually weren’t too far from coming out of his mouth: “Dominant big man.”
Coach Doug Collins has commented on how nice it would be to have that hulking force in the post.
That force appears to be on the way.
Bynum, who will turn 25 in October, entered the NBA draft after his senior year in high school at Saint Joseph’s High School in Metuchen, N.J., and was selected by the Lakers with the 10th overall pick in 2005. In his seven seasons with L.A., Bynum, who grew up in Plainsboro, N.J., averaged 11.7 points, 7.8 rebounds and 1.6 blocks. Last season, his best in the league, Bynum went for 18.7 points, 11.8 rebounds, 1.9 blocks and shot 55.8 percent from the floor in 35.2 minutes per game. He missed just six games, the fewest since his second year in the league. He has been dogged about his leadership and maturity issues and has been hampered by injuries throughout his career. He has missed 130 of the Lakers’ 394 regular-season games, mostly due to separate knee injuries.
Iguodala is currently a helping hand on an Olympic team that seems headed to winning the gold medal in London. This past season, Iguodala was an All-Star for the first time and earned the unending praise of Collins for his defensive prowess and overall game that produced 12.4 points, 6.1 rebounds and 5.5 assists.
Iguodala, 28, has spent all eight of his NBA seasons with the Sixers after being taken with the ninth pick in the 2004 draft. The durable Iguodala has been struggling with nagging injuries over the past couple of seasons, with tendinitis in both knees and a recurring Achilles’ strain.
In Bynum, the Sixers will be adding a possible expiring contract. Bynum is scheduled to make close to $16.5 million this coming season. Iguodala will make $14.7 million and has a player-option deal to make $15.9 million with the Sixers the next season.