Knicks reportedly willing to offer three players, two or three picks for Joel Embiid

Atlanta Hawks v Philadelphia 76ers
Atlanta Hawks v Philadelphia 76ers

Joel Embiid has not asked for a trade. He loves Philadelphia and is quick to say so. There is zero chance the 76ers would trade the reigning MVP in the middle of this season.

However, the 76ers enter this season with a James Harden-shaped cloud blocking out the sun over the franchise — he appears unlikely to play in the opener on Wednesday and his trade request stands. Meanwhile, Boston and Milwaukee are in an arms race at the top of the East. Embiid has made it clear he wants to chase a ring in Philadelphia “or anywhere else," and all of that combined leads to speculation about Embiid's future. It has other teams "monitoring" the situation.

Such as the Knicks, who have a trade package lined up of quality players — basically everyone on the roster not named Jalen Brunson — plus multiple first-round picks, reports Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer.

The Knicks are willing to offer a package that includes three key players, with Julius Randle, R.J. Barrett, Evan Fournier and Mitchell Robinson all available in exchange for Embiid, according to sources. A trio from that group would be paired with two or three first-round picks.

This report shows just how much pressure is on 76ers president Daryl Morey to nail the Harden trade and why he won't cave in for a lowball offer. The future of Embiid in Philly is on the line.

The Knicks are in a position to make a strong offer for any star that becomes available — Embiid, Luka Doncic and Karl-Anthony Towns are the names most mentioned, although how hard New York would chase Towns is up for debate. Whether that particular package of picks and players would interest the 76ers as they rebuild around Tyrese Maxey would depend on the other offers out there (the Heat, Clippers and plenty of others would be in the mix), but it also misses the point: Philly doesn't want to trade Embiid. It wants to win with him.

The problem for Philly is Morey bet big on his guy James Harden to be the missing piece, which has blown up spectacularly. Now it's all about his recovery from that swing and a miss.

Morey has to hit a home run now or the Knicks package will not be so theoretical.