Since the Philadelphia 76ers’ playoff exit, Ben Simmons sits on shaky ground with the franchise. It’s sprouted trade rumors with the realistic possibility Simmons has played his final game in Philadelphia. Meanwhile, the Golden State Warriors have emerged as a prominent landing spot, but one crucial factor has created internal hesitance.
Ben Simmons sitting on uncertain ground with the 76ers
The 76ers’ playoff shortcomings quickly shifted the narrative to Simmons holding an uncertain future.
The bulk of the blame centered on Simmons’ offensive struggles after he disappeared in the second-round series against the Atlanta Hawks. In the fourth quarter, he became a non-factor, taking only three total shots and scoring 12 points in the seven games. That included five contests without a single field-goal attempt.
In other words, the three-time All-Star’s playoff issues pushed the front office to consider moving on from him this offseason. It’s led Philadelphia to listen to trade offers while placing a lofty price tag of another All-Star talent in return.
The 25-year-old reportedly turned off all lines of communication with the 76ers in hopes of progressing toward a trade. According to Jason Dumas of KRON4 News, the only route to speak to Simmons sits through his agent Rich Paul.
Several teams such as the Minnesota Timberwolves, Indiana Pacers, Washington Wizards, Golden State Warriors, and Toronto Raptors expressed interest. However, it hasn’t moved the discussion toward a trade. The Warriors have become a potential landing spot, but the team remains hesitant due to one prominent factor.
Warriors grappling with second thoughts about trading for Ben Simmons
As the offseason progresses along, the Warriors are becoming a more feasible trade destination.
However, the discussion hasn’t moved toward a move as the team remains hesitant. During a recent episode of the Lowe Post podcast, ESPN NBA reporter Zach Lowe and TV personality Stephen A. Smith confirmed that the Warriors remain divided regarding Simmons fit playing alongside Draymond Green.
“I think the Warriors internally are divided on the potential fit of Simmons with Draymond Green,” Lowe said.via NBC Sports’ Brian Witt “Do you agree?”
“I’ve been told they are,” ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith responded. “They are divided.”
The two All-Star talents possess similar playing styles that could conflict. They each excel as passers while occupying much of the same space on the floor. Simmons’ inability to shoot from the outside limits his offensive capability.
.Meanwhile, Green holds a defined offensive role that he’s excelled within throughout his career, playing alongside Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson. It’s not that the Warriors don’t want Simmons, but his presence may complicate the team’s playing style.
Displacing Green from his defined spot by adding Simmons could complicate the offense rhythm and disrupt the fluidity. It isn’t to say the Warriors won’t trade for the three-time All-Star, but the situation is murky.
Warriors are aiming to return to NBA title contention
The Warriors possess the trade package assets to acquire Simmons, making it a matter of the front office’s commitment to the move.
The 25-year-old is in the second year of his five-year, $177.2 million deal that runs through the 2024-25 season. His contract contains no player or team options. If his fit isn’t cohesive with the Warriors’ star power, it will diminish his value while making his salary harder to move.
Golden State doesn’t possess any pressure to land Simmons. However, the franchise wants to maximize the remaining primes of their core group to compete for another NBA title.
Ultimately, if the Warriors doubts the move pushing the team closer to title contention, expect them to pass on the scenario.
Contract figures courtesy of Spotrac.