Three Ben Simmons trades that the 76ers should consider (10/2/21)
The Ben Simmons drama continues to rear its ugly head, as training camp has been going on for a week now, and Simmons has yet to show up.
A few days ago, it was reported that the Sixers refused to pay him his $8.25 million, which is 25% of his contract. If he continues to hold out, then he will be facing a multitude of fines and will be losing more money.
It’s looking more and more likely that Simmons’ career with the organization is all but over, so the best thing to do now is to find the best available trade package and move on.
Here are three enticing and realistic trade packages for the All-Star point guard.
Ben Simmons for Cj McCollum trade swap
It’s been rumored that Sixers President Daryl Morey prefers to trade Simmons to a team in the Western Conference, and the Portland Trail Blazers easily fit that bill.
The Trailblazers are trying to do whatever it takes to win now and keep Damian Lillard happy so he doesn’t request a trade from the organization.
Their current roster will not be able to contend in a stacked Western Conference that features teams like the Lakers, Clippers, Suns, Jazz, and Nuggets.
The best thing for them is to shake up the roster and add another All-Star to play alongside Lillard, and nothing would make more sense than a trade swap of Ben Simmons for Cj McCollum.
A Simmons-Lillard pairing would be a much cleaner fit than a duo of Simmons and Embiid. For Simmons to play alongside a lethal point guard and for him to move to a point forward role would benefit his game.
On the Sixers side, they will be receiving one of the best shooting guards in the league. McCollum is coming off a career year, where he averaged a career-high in points (23.1), assists (4.7), and he shot 40% from beyond the arc while averaging the 4th most three-pointers converted and the 5th most three-pointers attempted per game.
The spacing and shooting that he provides would do wonders for Joel Embiid, as that would give him more opportunities to dominate opposing centers in the paint area.
On the money side of things, both of their contracts are very similar, as Simmons is getting paid $33 million this season, while McCollum is making $30 million.
Ben Simmons for Malcolm Brogdon and Caris Lavert
The Pacers need another All-Star player to play alongside their own All-Star in Domantas Sabonis.
While it wouldn’t be the best fit, longtime Mavericks and current Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle would find a way to make the pairing a successful one.
While losing Brogdon and Lavert will hurt, in return the Pacers add another playmaker who is only 25 years old, arguably the best defender in the league, and has four years remaining on his current contract.
Simmons would be pairing up with another outstanding defender in Myles Turner, who happened to lead the league last season in blocks (3.4). With those two, that would give Indiana the best defense in all the NBA.
Embiid has never had the opportunity to play alongside an actual point guard who can shoot the ball from anywhere on the court.
Brogdon is coming off a career season, where he averaged a career-high in points (21.2). The season prior, he averaged 7.1 assists, and for his career, he has shot 38.6% from deep.
Not only is he an excellent offensive point guard, but he is a good defender. While he isn’t of the same caliber as Simmons, he is a versatile defender who can guard multiple positions on the court with his 6' 11" wingspan.
The Sixers would also be receiving Caris Lavert who averaged a career-high in points with Indiana at 20.7 points. Last season he showed off his underrated playmaking ability, as he averaged six assists with the Nets and 4.9 with the Pacers.
The Sixers would be able to squeeze both of their contracts in, as Brogdon is making only $21 million this season, and Lavert is also being underpaid only making 17.5 million.
Ben Simmons for De’Angelo Russell and Jaden McDaniels
The Timberwolves are a very realistic trade destination for Simmons. They are in desperate need of defense, as they ranked 29th in points allowed per game a season ago, and it doesn’t hurt that Simmons is really good friends with KAT (Karl Anthony Towns).
Simmons would be the perfect third piece to Minnesota’s young nucleus in KAT and Anthony Edwards. Towns is a stretch big who has shot 38.7% from deep throughout his career which would give Simmons opportunities to score in the paint, and Anthony Edwards has already established himself as one of the best small forwards in the league is only 20 years old, and has shown a willingness to shoot it from deep as he averaged 7.2 attempts from beyond the arc last season.
The Sixers get De’Angelo Russell who would be a solid fit next to Embiid. He is a point guard who can dish out the ball, as he has averaged 5.3 assists throughout his career.
The shooting and spacing that Russell provides would greatly benefit Embiid. Last season, Russell shot a career-high from deep shooting at 38.7%. His injury history is a concern because Embiid is also injury prone, but all that matters is that Russell’s fit alongside the Sixers superstar is better compared to Simmons’ fit.
To add to the trade the Sixers get power forward Jaden McDaniels, who showed flashes as a rookie last season for one of the worst teams in the league. He should provide spacing too, as he shot an above-average 36.4 from deep.
Simmons and Russell’s contracts are very similar, as they are both making around $30 million this season, and McDaniels is only making $2 million, so contracts shouldn’t be a reason why this trade doesn’t end up going through.