Woj: Ben Simmons Trade Still Being Pursued by 76ers, Asking Price Is 'Steep'

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVJuly 28, 2021

Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons (25) against the Golden State Warriors during an NBA basketball game in San Francisco, Tuesday, March 23, 2021. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
AP Photo/Jeff Chiu

The Philadelphia 76ers are continuing to gauge the trade market for Ben Simmons, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

Wojnarowski also reported Philly is placing a "steep asking price" on the three-time All-Star. One source told The Athletic's Shams Charania earlier this month the team was looking to get another All-Star-type talent back in any deal.

Wojnarowski said on The Jump the Sixers are looking to get something similar to what the Houston Rockets received for James Harden. Harden went to Brooklyn in a four-team deal that saw Houston get four first-round picks, four pick swaps, Victor Oladipo, Dante Exum and Rodions Kurucs.

When it comes to Simmons' run with the Sixers, there may be no coming back from the 2021 postseason.

He struggled to make an impact in crunch time against the Atlanta Hawks, and his pass to Matisse Thybulle in the fourth quarter of Game 7 was emblematic to some of his unwillingness to be the guy in big moments.

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Ben Simmons did not just pass this up... <a href="https://t.co/4JyM7ZHNkJ">pic.twitter.com/4JyM7ZHNkJ</a>

There's no question Simmons' lack of range and hesitancy toward taking jumpers is a problem. That much was clear during the playoffs.

But his accomplishments to date shouldn't be cast aside entirely. Through four years, he's averaging 15.9 points, 8.1 rebounds and 7.7 assists while earning two All-Defensive nods.

This summer may have represented a nadir for Simmons in which he was left with no choice but to address the areas in which he's lacking on the court.

"Offensively, I wasn't there this series," he told reporters immediately after Philadelphia's Eastern Conference semifinals exit. "There's a lot of things I need to work on."

Basketball Australia said in June he had withdrawn from the national team ahead of the 2021 Summer Olympics in Tokyo in order to focus on individual workouts.

Simmons isn't on Harden's level, so Philadelphia will probably struggle to get the kind of haul Houston did. However, it wouldn't be surprising if a franchise—especially one in a non-marquee market—paid a premium to get Simmons in the hope he expands his offensive game while remaining an elite defender.