Ben Simmons’ trade talks are intensifying as the February 10 trade deadline approaches, with the Hawks, Cavaliers and a host of other teams reportedly in the mix at some level.
But not the Knicks.
From Ben Fischer of Bleacher Report:
The Knicks have been discussing internally ways to land Ben Simmons, but New York has never called Sixers executives about a potential deal structure, league sources have told B / R. It’s hard to imagine a straightforward scenario where the Knicks could hit Philadelphia’s high asking price of a top player without including a third team.
Any discussion of Simmons and the Knicks should start with the question: do the Knicks want Simmons? Should they?
New York is looking for a fundamental player for the franchise – ideally someone who pairs well with Julius Randle – and it is questionable if Simmons is that player, or how well he associates with Randle ( especially this year’s Randle, who can’t hit a 3). Simmons is undoubtedly a good player and an elite defender, but is he a # 1 option? Is it worth the asking price?
Team president Leon Rose, to his credit, has been patient and in building the Knicks. No thoughtless move to trade for aging superstars who may back the team with a few wins but aren’t true tentpole players. That shouldn’t change – don’t let what has been an unmistakably disappointing first half of this season lead to the panic button being pressed. A Simmons trade – unless the Knicks stole it, and that doesn’t happen considering what Daryl Morey asks in exchange for the 76ers – seems more panic than a smart building in the long run.
New York would be wise not to participate in the Simmons saga. Fischer says it looks like the Knicks can tinker around the edges of the roster by the deadline, but probably aren’t making big moves. Patience wins. He will probably be rewarded eventually.