Anyone interested in one slightly used Ben Simmons?
Simmons is almost certain to start the 2021-22 NBA season on another team after some postseason performances that rang the death knell on his Philly career. After Simmons’ agent, Rich Paul, reportedly discussed a potential trade with the 76ers front office soon after the end of the playoffs, Philadelphia is seemingly happy to oblige a deal.
The Athletic’s Shams Charania reports that “(The 76ers) want an All-Star-caliber player in return.” That is wholly unsurprising, and there’s likely to be more involved in any deal for Simmons. But if that’s all they want for a player who has made several All-NBA defensive teams and an All-NBA third team, that’s palatable.
In truth, there are lots of factors to consider in a Simmons deal: The 76ers’ asking price is one, but perhaps the most important factor is cap space. Simmons is owed $146,684,160 through the 2024-25 season, and also holds a 15 percent trade kicker in his contract.
Through all that, though, Charania reports that Simmons’ market remains “robust” and that there are many teams that will be in on him at an “attainable” price and an attractive age (Simmons turns 25 on July 20).
Simmons’ postseason performance was highlighted by poor shooting and lack of late-game gusto resulting in Philadelphia’s second-round loss to the Hawks. After some speculation that Simmons may play in the Olympics for Australia, the guard is sitting out to work on his game.
Just know that his game, improved or not, will likely be played for a team other than the 76ers come tipoff on the 2021-22 NBA season.