The Ben Simmons-Philadelphia 76ers trade saga has been at the center of the NBA news cycle, and ESPN insider Stephen A. Smith has now chimed in with a new take on the situation.
Simmons has been pushing for a move away from the 76ers for some time now, and Smith has offered his two cents on the Australia international's attitude:
"It's his job to grow up and accept some responsibility. And it's damn sure his job as a professional athlete to maximize his potential to be the best he can be. I have said this for years, Ben Simmons is a jump shot away from being LeBron James 2.0."
Ben Simmons has been linked with the Sacramento Kings and Portland Trail Blazers so far, but a move has not yet materialized. His stock has gone down in recent months due to his performances, trade debacle, and his tussles with the Philadelphia 76ers.
Philadelphia 76ers finding it tough to find a trade destination for Ben Simmons
Ben Simmons had a 2021 postseason to forget as he drew considerable flak for his limited skill set. His inability to shoot from downtown has been a major hindrance in the Philadelphia 76ers' path to success.
The 25-year-old now wants out of the franchise, but management are finding it difficult to negotiate an asking price of their choice.
The 76ers are expecting a James Harden-like package in exchange for the point forward's services, but teams across the league do not view Ben Simmons as a franchise cornerstone.
Teams like the Sacramento Kings and Portland Trail Blazers have shown significant interest, but both these teams are hesitant to part ways with their stars to acquire Simmons.
The Sacramento Kings are reluctant to give away one of Tyrese Haliburton or De'Aaron Fox in a potential trade for Ben Simmons, which has been a major roadblock. Recent reports indicate that they want to keep hold of Harrison Barnes as well, and it is safe to say that the deal has reached an impasse.
Coming to the Portland Trail Blazers, a Ben Simmons-Damian Lillard straight swap could pretty much be ruled out. This leaves the 76ers with CJ McCollum as a player they can realistically land, and it looks like the only plausible scenario where all sides involved can be kept happy.
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