ESPN's Stephen A. Smith revealed details regarding NBA trade rumors linking Ben Simmons to the Trail Blazers on Wednesday's episode of First Take. He said:
"The Portland Trail Blazers, from what I am told, obviously they talked about CJ McCollum, they talked about Robert Covington, they talked about a couple of first-round picks. They don't want to put it out there because they don't want to alienate CJ McCollum in the event that you keep him. But nevertheless, it's something they have been willing to offer, the Sixers have not been willing to bite."
As suggested by multiple reports, Ben Simmons is unlikely to report to the Philadelphia 76ers training camp. He has conveyed to the organization that he won't play for them again as well.
NBA trade rumors have suggested that the likes of the Cleveland Cavaliers, Minnesota Timberwolves and Sacramento Kings are among the teams interested in Simmons' services.
However, the Philadelphia 76ers are demanding a heavy price for their All-Star point guard, which has been a reason for no trade materializing as yet. As per recent reports, the Sixers are now willing to keep Ben Simmons. They are hoping to convince him to play for them when the new season begins next month.
NBA Trade Rumors: Should the Philadelphia 76ers accept the Portland Trail Blazers' offer for Ben Simmons?
The Philadelphia 76ers are looking for a James Harden-like package for Ben Simmons. The Aussie guard still has four years left on his contract. However, not many teams are willing to include their best assets in a trade deal for Simmons. His shooting woes and inability to be a reliable player on offense in crunch situations has been an area of concern.
But the Portland Trail Blazers' interest in parting ways with a player like CJ McCollum doesn't seem surprising. The Trail Blazers need to bolster their defense, which has been their weakness for the last few seasons. The addition of a player like Ben Simmons would help them immensely.
As far as the Philadelphia 76ers are concerned, the deal will put an end to the Simmons saga and they will also be receiving a player like McCollum who fills a glaring hole in their offense. McCollum is a terrific shooter and a scorer. He averaged 23.1 points and 4.7 assists per game last season while also shooting 40.2% from the three-point line on 8.9 attempts per game.
Receiving a defensive-minded player like Robert Convington, as well as a couple of first-round picks along with McCollum, definitely doesn't look like the worst deal either. So the Philadelphia 76ers should consider this trade if a deal is indeed on the table.
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