"The enigma" seems to be a fitting nickname for Evan Turner, because after three seasons with the 76ers it is still difficult for the franchise and its fans to figure him out.
Despite displaying flashes of excellence, including his 2012 playoff performance, Turner has struggled to fit in and find a role with the team. In three NBA season he has been a consistent starter and has also been relegated to a reserve, and this fluctuation has been extremely frustrating.
It seems that as far as the fan base is concerned, Turner has run out of time. The results of our Sixers Stay or Go survey illustrated that the majority of fans feel it is finally time to trade Turner, and the respondents may be right.
Inconsistencies have defined his career, as you never know exactly what you are going to get from E.T. on any given night. Are you going to get the tenacious Turner, who can lock down a premier wing player and is fearless on the offensive end? Or are you going to get the anemic Turner, who goes 1-7 in fifteen minutes of forgettable play?
The Sixers toyed with trading Turner, along with center Spencer Hawes, for Atlanta's Josh Smith late last season, eventually opting to hold on to the former second-overall draft pick. While the Smith deal didn't work out, it demonstrates that the organization is not opposed to trading Turner, and with the Sixers facing an offseason of uncertainty and lacking a true team identity, now may be an ideal time to make a move.
Although he possesses the tools to be an extremely effective NBA player, Turner has not yet developed into the consistent, versatile offensive option the Sixers thought they could build around. Unfortunately, the franchise cannot afford to continue depending on his eventual development. The Sixers are in a sorry, uncertain state and Turner provides more questions than answers.
Based on his on-court effectiveness, it seems as though Turner would be at his best in a point-forward type role, or as a glue guy on a team where there are already established options. Such scenarios would free Turner up to play his game without being so heavily depended on for offensive output.
Turner thrives with the ball in his hand, in the open court, and taking it to the rim; duties already held here by Jrue Holiday. So while such skills may take a backseat with the Sixers, there are several other organizations out there that would find Turner's skill set very valuable.
At 24, Turner is still young and has the opportunity to add a lot to his game, making him attractive to potential suitors. At this early stage in his career, the Sixers could still get some serious value for the former Ohio State standout.
What to do with Turner is a question that needs to be answered along with a fistful of other issues looming large over the Sixers this summer. It only seems logical to try and trade Turner for some value, rather than continuously trying to force him to fit.