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Ben Simmons Trade Rumors: 76ers Asked Blazers for Three 1st-Round Picks, Draft Swaps

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVOctober 8, 2021

AP Photo/Matt Slocum

The Philadelphia 76ers reportedly asked the Portland Trail Blazers for three first-round draft picks and three pick swap options as part of a trade package for point guard Ben Simmons.

Shams Charania of Stadium and The Athletic reported details of the Sixers' proposal, which was rejected by the Blazers, on Friday:

Shams Charania @ShamsCharania

Latest on Ben Simmons and the 76ers: <a href="https://t.co/PWuRV9eyV8">pic.twitter.com/PWuRV9eyV8</a>

Simmons didn't report for the start of 76ers training camp last month and made it clear he "intends to never play another game for the franchise," per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

Both sides have continued to dig in their heels over the past few weeks.

Simmons has remained away from the organization as it prepares for the 2021-22 season, while the Sixers' front office has shown no signs its willing to deal the three-time All-Star for less than what it believes is fair-market value despite the potential to enter the campaign at less than full strength.

Multiple NBA sources told Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer when the saga started the 76ers will have a "tough time" getting their preferred return given the circumstances.

"The kid said he's not going back," one executive said. "I'm not giving you what you're demanding. They really messed this up."

That doesn't mean there isn't some level of interest in the 25-year-old LSU product, who's been named to the NBA All-Defensive First Team each of the last two years.

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The Cleveland Cavaliers, Detroit Pistons, Indiana Pacers, Minnesota Timberwolves, San Antonio Spurs and Toronto Raptors have recently checked in on Simmons' availability, per Pompey.

Meanwhile, the 76ers placed the $8.25 million owed last week as part of the guard's contract in an escrow and plan to deduct around $360,000 from that account as a fine for every game he misses while away from the team, according to ESPN's Tim Bontemps and Bobby Marks.

So far there's been nothing to suggest a trade is imminent, and it sounds like if the Sixers aren't willing to reduce their asking price, the staredown could last well into the regular season.

Philadelphia begins the campaign Oct. 20 when it visits the New Orleans Pelicans.

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