It continues to appear as if the 76ers will trade star guard/forward Ben Simmons before the start of training camp, but the main question is … where?
As of now, the Raptors have had the “most active” trade talks with the 76ers about a Simmons deal, per Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report.
The Cavaliers, Timberwolves, Pacers and Kings are others believed to be in strong pursuit of Simmons, though 76ers chief of basketball operations Daryl Morey is reportedly shooting for the moon.
It has been reported that the 76ers want an All-Star in return for Simmons.
“And league executives contacted by B/R continue to mention the possibility of the Sixers holding onto Simmons, should a desirable offer still fail to arise during the draft, in the hopes of Damian Lillard ultimately seeking to leave Portland,” Fischer wrote.
Meanwhile, the Raptors have some things to figure out as well. Along with owning the No. 4 overall pick in Thursday’s NBA Draft, they seem likely to lose veteran point guard Kyle Lowry in free agency.
Interestingly, the 76ers are one of the teams with which Lowry, a Philadelphia native, is most strongly linked. A sign-and-trade of Lowry as part of a deal for Simmons is something that is sure to hit the rumor mill, and who knows, possibly become reality.
Either way, as Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer noted on Monday, Fischer wrote that the “overwhelming expectation around the NBA remains that Philadelphia will trade Simmons before the start of training camp.”
Simmons, 25, is coming off a subpar playoff showing, with the 76ers losing to the Hawks in the second round of the playoffs. Simmons either refused to shoot or shot poorly late in games, finishing a historically bad 34 percent on free throws.
Still, at 6-foot-10 he is an accomplished passer and defender on the wing, averaging 14.9 points and 6.9 assists this past season. He finished second in Defensive Player of the Year voting last season — and for all the grief he takes about his jumper, he is a career 56 percent shooter.
Either way, agent Rich Paul has been meeting with Morey regularly to discuss Simmons’ future with the franchise, something that started at the NBA Combine in Chicago last month, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported.
Along with Simmons, the 76ers are looking to trade the No. 28 overall draft pick, as Kyle Neubeck of the Philly Voice was the first to report.