Ben Simmons Rumor of the Day: Reported Knicks and Lakers Interest

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With each passing day, we get closer to a Ben Simmons trade, God willing.

Last week, Woj reported that trade talks were “gathering momentum” because shitty teams are imploding and deciding they can’t compete this year. The Blazers fired their GM and the Pacers are apparently ready to move on from some of their stars.

Add in the fact that on Wednesday, more players become eligible for trade, and things are moving in the right direction here.

Now the latest from Shams at The Athletic:

The 76ers are ramping up their efforts to spark multi-team trade scenarios to move Simmons, sources said, and a fresh pool of teams has emerged as potential destinations.

The New York Knicks, Los Angeles Lakers, Minnesota Timberwolves, Portland Trail Blazers, Sacramento Kings, Indiana Pacers and Cleveland Cavaliers are among the teams interested in Simmons, sources said, although it’s unclear how much traction Philadelphia truly has on any move.

Simmons has yet to play this season after reporting late to the 76ers’ training camp and informing teammates, coaches and front-office officials that he is not mentally ready to rejoin the team on the floor and needs to receive help. Simmons has sought help from a personal mental health specialist and gave the 76ers’ team therapist permission to speak with his own therapist, sources said.

But it’s clear 76ers president of basketball operations Daryl Morey has his eyes set on a potential trade scenario to ship Simmons out of Philadelphia — whenever a rival team can meet his asking price. The 76ers are currently asking teams for an All-Star-caliber player and/or multiple first-round draft picks for Simmons, sources said.

Alright, so listen, there’s no Lakers/Sixers swap taking place. That team already can’t shoot, and they don’t have any movable contracts because they’re bloated at the top with Russell Westbrook, LeBron, and Anthony Davis. The only thing there is if a crap team takes on the Russ contract in a multi-team deal, and gets some picks back.

New York? Julius Randle is in the last year of his deal. R.J. Barrett? Immanuel Quickley? I don’t think they have the “difference maker” Daryl Morey is looking for.

Based on those other teams, the names that interest me are:

  • Wolves: Anthony Edwards, Malik Beasley off the bench
  • Blazers: Damian Lillard, one of Anfernee Simons or Nassir Little
  • Cavs: more than happy to take back one of Collin Sexton or Darius Garland
  • Kings: would do a Fox deal, or look at Barnes or Hield in a multi-team deal where another guy comes over
  • Pacers: Sabonis if you think he can play with Embiid, LeVert + another player (would have done Brogdon previously, but can’t now)

Again, you’re looking primarily for a perimeter guy here, UNLESS you are convinced Tyrese Maxey can be the man, in which case you bring back a wing who can be that “difference maker” instead.

Fingers crossed, this is done soon.