Ben Simmons Update: Morey focusing on James Harden, plus another team in the mix
The NBA trade deadline is just two weeks away, but at this point, it’s looking more and more likely that the Philadelphia 76ers will wait to move Ben Simmons until the offseason. Known Klutch Sports double agent Shams Charania released an update on the Ben Simmons saga this morning, with James Harden looking like the prime target for Daryl Morey.
According to Charania, Morey has the backing of ownership and Embiid to wait until the offseason to move Simmons for a star instead of rushing a deal before the deadline.
Harden has a player option this offseason that he is expected to decline to become a free agent. If the 76ers were to acquire him, it would have to be through a sign and trade involving Simmons since the Sixers don’t have the cap space to sign the Nets guard outright.
None of this is new information, but we did get some more news on the other teams involved in the running for Simmons and what went down last season with Harden.
Before trading him last season, Houston Rockets owner Tilman Fertita reportedly gave Harden a choice between Brooklyn and the 76ers, and the former MVP chose the Nets. Even Charania was weary of this bit, with Fertita reported by many to hold a grudge against Morey for leaving Houston for Philadelphia.
The Charlotte Hornets are a new team in the running but don’t have what is wanted for Simmons in a potential deal. The Kings and Hawks are still interested, but the 76ers counteroffers were declined. Philadelphia wanted Tyrese Haliburton and several picks for Simmons from Sacramento, or John Collins and draft picks for Simmons and Tobias Harris from the Hawks.
What’s next for the 76ers is unknown, but Harden is likely the best bet at this time for Philadelphia. Damian Lillard is sitting the season out with abdominal surgery, and Harden has been reported to be annoyed with Brooklyn. Losing Kevin Durant for a month alongside Kyrie Irving playing just part-time could be the tip of the iceberg.
Mandatory Credit: Sportscasting