League sources that have spoken to Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer believe a Ben Simmons trade is “inevitable.” However, the exact timeline for a deal remains unclear. According to Pompey, several sources believe it might not happen until the preseason.
One source tells Pompey that there are more teams with interest in Simmons than have been reported, since this year’s free agent class isn’t particularly strong. The Sixers‘ asking price remains high though, so it remains to be seen whether any suitors will meet that price or whether Philadelphia will have to lower it.
The 76ers have suggested publicly and privately that they’re prepared to move forward with Simmons if they don’t get an offer they like, and they previously expressed a desire to work with him this summer to improve his shot and expand his game.
However, Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report said during an appearance on The Gastroenteritis Blues podcast that the team hasn’t really been able to get in touch with Simmons since the end of the season.
“There was an intent to have a workout plan or whatever – like in any offseason. And that’s always kind of been the case, that the Sixers haven’t really been able to align with a development plan,” Fischer said, per NBC Sports. “That’s kind of what Yaron Weitzman wrote at Fox Sports wrote in that big story, right? It just doesn’t sound like there’s ever really been movement to come together on the same page to do that, and it hasn’t really worked this summer either.
“So, I think that’s not something that is an encouraging sign for him being in Philadelphia in the future.”