Ben Simmons trades rumors: 76ers and goalkeeper deadlocked, contract scares some teams, reports show

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Things have been pretty calm on Ben Simmons’ front in recent weeks, as COVID-19 has dominated the news and Joel Embiid has put the Philadelphia 76ers on its back. But as the February 10 trade deadline approaches, attention is starting to return to Simmons, who still hasn’t played this season.

Not much has changed when it comes to the key points: Simmons doesn’t want to play for the Sixers; the Sixers are only interested in trading him if they can get an All-Star player in return; opposing teams have so far been unwilling to respond to the Sixers’ assessment. Simmons’ agent Rich Paul met with team president Daryl Morey and chief executive Elton Brand on Wednesday to discuss the standoff, but no significant progress was made. by Adrian Wojnarowski from ESPN.

However, there have been a few updates on the status of Simmons’ readiness to play and which teams may be interested. Here are the latest reports and rumors:

Simmons would need weeks of conditioning to play

While Simmons has no plans to replay for the Sixers, he doesn’t want to retire. That being said, it doesn’t look like he’ll be ready to go immediately if he’s traded. Simmons would need at least “a few weeks” of conditioning and fieldwork before getting dressed again, according to Sam Amick of The Athletic.

Overall, you can see why someone who hasn’t played in an NBA game since last June would need a chance to acclimate to a new team. At the same time, there are some things wrong here, and this report will not increase the business value of Simmons.

First of all, teams already have to weigh so many different questions when considering a Simmons trade. Would his unique talents match our list? Will he ever become an effective playoff player? Does he really want to play for us, or would he try to get by again? Addition of “when can he play?” to the list is not encouraging. There’s only eight weeks between the trade deadline and the end of the regular season, so much of the running would be missing. How does that help a team looking to add Simmons for a playoff push?

Plus, it’s hard not to feel cynical about the sanity aspect of this situation. According to Amick’s report in November, Simmons’ camp did not mention any mental health issues when he initially asked to leave Philadelphia. This concern was only raised later, after the Sixers began fining Simmons for not showing up to training camp. In particular, a clause in the CBA prevents teams from fining players who have not fulfilled their contract “if this failure was caused by the player’s mental handicap”.

Since then, there have been various accusations from both sides that give the impression that “sanity” has become a pawn. Simmons’ camp maintained they were not mentally ready and offered no timeline for when that might change. Yet all of a sudden, if he was traded to another team, it would only be a matter of conditioning until he could play.

Some teams are scared of Simmons’ contract

Star players demanding trades are nothing new to the NBA, but most of the time a player asks to be released towards the end of their contract, and the team feels pressured to trade them rather than losing them for the sake of it. nothing in free agency. Simmons, on the other hand, tried to make a power play with three years and $ 108.8 million left on his contract.

This is one of the main reasons why this saga has dragged on for so long. The Sixers have the option of waiting until they get a deal they really like, and their high asking price is due in part to Simmons being signed until 2025. But according to Amick, to other teams were scared of the years and money left over on the Simmons case:

But as I walked around the front office to better understand the Simmons studies taking place in real time here, I came across this somewhat surprising sentiment: the length (and size) of his contract, which was considered by Sixers as a major leverage point, and rationale for the high asking price because the threat of free agency has been delayed, is in fact a concern to some.

Most of the time, opposing teams would be excited to trade for a player who was locked in for the long haul. With Simmons, however, it’s understandable that some teams don’t feel that way. First of all, one would have to give up a huge loot to have it. Then you would devote a large chunk of your heading space to someone who hasn’t proven they can be one of the best players on a championship team. Plus, he’s already tried to fight his way out of a town and might do the same with your team down the line.

Timberwolves waiting to see what happens

Despite all reasonable questions and concerns about Simmons, there are always interested teams out there – for the right price. Veteran NBA reporter Marc Stein noted earlier this week that the Atlanta Hawks are a team to watch given their disappointing debut and John Collins’ displeasure.

Another team to watch is the Minnesota Timberwolves. They’ve been interested in Simmons for a long time, and it’s noteworthy that Amick has reported that they are currently suspending all other potential moves until they see what’s going on with him. However, any potential Simmons trade to Minnesota would likely require the involvement of a third team, given that Wolves won’t give up on Karl-Anthony Towns or Anthony Edwards.

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