The Sacramento Kings soften their player’s trade availability, meaning Ben Simmons should be traded as soon as possible
Damn. It’s been quite some time since we fired up the Ben Simmons Rumor Mill. Outside of the fact that he recently got engaged and still refuses to play basketball for the Philadelphia 76ers, the general conversation about Ben Simmons has been dead. Even more so when you have Joel Embiid and Tyrese Maxey in the midst of a five game winning streak and delivering more than a few legendary press conferences.
Everything with Simmons has been super quiet and the 76ers pretty much act like he doesn’t exist anymore, and rightfully so. Typically in January, even with Ben Simmons playing, trade rumors start to build up and chatter is everywhere. Around this time last year we were discussing moving Simmons for James Harden.
The NBA Trade Deadline is on February 10th, less than five weeks away. I think it’s safe to assume that NBA teams will begin looking at their rosters and seeing where they can improve before the deadline. One team almost everyone will be calling, is the Philadelphia 76ers about Ben Simmons.
A team that I feel like has been in and out of Ben Simmons trade talks really since the start of the entire saga, is the Sacramento Kings. The 76ers had talks with Sacramento last summer regarding De’Aaron Fox, but the Kings weren’t willing to move Fox or include him in any type of deal for Simmons
Back in December, it seemed clear that the Kings remained firm on what they were willing to offer for Ben Simmons, something that Daryl Morey was not interested in.
Buddy Hield and Marvin Bagley III sounded okay, given the exhaustion 76ers’ fans have endured over the past seven months, but it could easily be better. Now, it looks like the Kings are willing to soften up their player availability for trades before the deadline.
This makes sense because the Sacramento Kings are absolutely terrible with a record of 16-24 on the season and no signs of turning things around.
The Athletic’s Sam Amick reported Wednesday that he’s head sources close to the situation that the Kings’ front office is softening their stance on a possible Ben Simmons deal.
“While I reported in early September that a Kings-Simmons was looking very unlikely, that was long before team officials had a chance to see nearly half a season’s worth of (mostly subpar) play. Sacramento’s interest is definitely there.”
Okay, does that mean that De’Aaron Fox is available? Not necessarily but honestly, do the 76ers even need a player like Fox after what we have seen from Tyrese Maxey this season? Maxey is averaging 16.8 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 4.5 assists per game this season and with each passing game, looks to be getting more comfortable in the point guard position and playing with Joel Embiid.
Don’t get me wrong, Fox would still be a golden goose for the 76ers to land in a Simmons trade and I would gladly accept him in any type of trade package but we do have other options.
ESPN Insider Tim MacMahon reported in December that he heard Fox was no longer untouchable for the Kings, so maybe there is room to open up that door again for the Sixers before the deadline, but I think the Sixers would be better off focusing on a Buddy Hield and Tyrese Haliburton trade anyways.
Haliburton is in the midst of a career year. If Fox is available, there’s no reason to think that Haliburton wouldn’t also be available in trade talks too, right? The 21-year old shooting guard is currently averaging just over 13 points points per game, shooting 46 percent from the floor, 42 percent from three point range, and 81% from the free throw line. Haliburton is also averaging nearly seven assists per game and his ceiling is incredibly high.
Give the Philadelphia 76ers additional offensive talent in Buddy Hield and Haliburton and throw in a first round pick, and we can send Ben Simmons to California, where he has wanted to be throughout this entire process, and finally move on.
For the Kings, they can get rid of Buddy Hield’s contract and dump Haliburton who is on the second year of his rookie contract in return for a superstar that honestly, they stand no chance in landing via free agency.
You can’t tell me a trade like that wouldn’t work out great for both sides, and it will help me forget about Ben Simmons and all of the pain and suffering he has endured upon the city of Philadelphia over the past seven months. It’s time to let go and the Kings are a perfect match. Make it happen, Morey.