Sixers Talking Ben Simmons Trade With Blazers, Others

The 76ers are “gaining momentum” in their push to trade star Ben Simmons, including some talks with the Trail Blazers, per Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.Ben Simmons

While the sides seem to be exploring a deal, the Blazers have made it clear that guard Damian Lillard is not available, Wojnarowski added.

Along with the Blazers, the 76ers have spoken to multiple teams on the Simmons front, seeking a “top 25-level player” as part of the return.

It is believed the Spurs, Raptors, Pacers, Rockets are among those who have been engaged in Simmons talks.

League sources have told Hoops Wire that they envision a Simmons trade involving multiple teams, as opposed to just a straight up trade involving the 76ers and one other club.

“Philadelphia has been aggressively trying to assemble two- and three-team deal structures to land a package that would include a top 25-level player,” Wojnarowski reported.

As has been previously reported, the 76ers seemingly are more likely to make a deal on or after Wednesday (Dec. 15), when players who signed offseason contracts are eligible to be traded.

Meanwhile, Lillard reportedly wants the Blazers to trade for Simmons, the type of player who could possibly shore up their NBA worst-defense. Fellow Blazers guard CJ McCollum has been mentioned as part of a potential return in a Simmons trade, Wojnarowski wrote, though those talks haven’t gained any real traction.

Lillard, for his part, said he himself is not seeking a trade.

“My intentions are to be in Portland and to figure this out,” he told reporters. “Why would I be part of trying to find solutions if I’m planning an exit?”

Blazers interim general manager has said the team is looking to make a deal.

“The way I’ve kind of approached this is, I’m going to get the deal to the 1-yard line, and then I’m going to take it to (ownership), and then they make the final call,” Cronin said. “They’ll have our recommendations as to what to do.

“So, it’s pretty standard that way in the regard of there is a clearinghouse you have to go through. But my understanding is yes, go out, do your job, find deals, participate as if you are the GM.”

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