Saturday , November 27 2021
The Big Lead

Who Are the 30 Players the Sixers Think They Can Get in a Ben Simmons Trade?

Ben Simmons remains a Philadelphia 76er but has yet to step on the court this year as he and Rich Paul suggest mental health issues are the primary reason he is not ready to return to play. It is a tricky situation for team and player and even trickier to talk about from an outside perspective. So we won’t do that.

What we will do is discuss Sam Amick’s latest report from The Athletic on Simmons’ current standing with the Sixers. Anonymous sources continue to hammer home that Daryl Morey is more than willing to sit tight and wait for the right deal to materialize, even if it takes years. Amick reports the Sixers have more than a few possible targets in mind that they believe are feasible goals.

In fact, they have a list of 30 players they want to try and acquire in exchange for Simmons, and think up to half of those players will be available sometime in the next calendar year.

As you may have heard by now, Portland’s Damian Lillard is not only on said list but somewhere near the top. Ditto for Brooklyn’s James Harden, the former Rocket with whom Morey tried unsuccessfully to reunite with in January and who, by the way, could come to Philly via sign-and-trade this summer if he decides to shock the basketball world and leave Kevin Durant behind. Also high on the list: Washington’s Bradley Beal. Those kinds of guys.

But here’s the part that may come as a surprise: A source with knowledge of the list said there are approximately 30 players who would satisfy the Sixers in a Simmons swap, and there’s an internal belief that a fair amount of them — let’s say five to 10 — could become available in the next year or two.

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