The Philadelphia 76ers are actively exploring the trade market for their All-Star point guard Ben Simmons, but to this point, they apparently haven’t been serious enough about discussing realistic trades in the minds of other teams around the league.
The word around the league has been that the Sixers are seeking a “Harden-esque” package for Simmons, which isn’t a huge surprise given the years he has left on his deal and that Philly was trying to deal Simmons for Harden earlier this year. Still, the number of picks and quality of players the Sixers are asking for in Simmons talks have apparently led to teams walking away from talks with Daryl Morey feeling there’s not even a middle ground to be found.
Matt Moore of the Action Network reported last week that Toronto unsurprisingly rebuffed a request from the Sixers for the No. 4 pick, Fred VanVleet, OG Anunoby, and Kyle Lowry for Simmons. On Draft day, Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer brought further example of the wild trade offers Philly is approaching teams with centered on Simmons, with this nugget about discussions with the Warriors.
The Sixers asked for Andrew Wiggins, James Wiseman, the Nos. 7 and 14 picks in tonight’s NBA draft along with two future first-rounders in exchange for Ben Simmons, according to multiple sources. The Warriors quickly turned down the offer.
One league executive said the Sixers are making “totally outlandish offers.”
It’s not a complete shock that the Sixers are asking for the world in return for Simmons right now, as they feel they can hold out on a trade until closer to the start of the season when desperation might set in elsewhere. However, given this is the starting point for them, it raises a real question about what they’d be willing to compromise down to in Simmons talks, because it seems abundantly clear that their current asking price isn’t close to what the league feels is Simmons’ market.
Part of this might be the Sixers and Morey trying desperately to drive that market up after Simmons’ dreadful postseason, knowing these are ridiculous offers but also knowing that they need to set the bar high to try and bring others up in the hunt for the middle ground. In any case, barring the Sixers coming back to reality quickly or some team thinking very highly of Simmons, a Draft night Simmons trade seems unlikely for the moment.