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Ben Simmons Trade Rumors: Latest Buzz on De'Aaron Fox, Potential 3-Team Deal

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIJanuary 7, 2022

Sacramento Kings guard De'Aaron Fox (5) gets around Atlanta Hawks guard Delon Wright (0) on a drive to the basket during the second half of an NBA basketball game in Sacramento, Calif., Wednesday, Jan. 5, 2022. The Hawks won 108-102. (AP Photo/José Luis Villegas)
AP Photo/José Luis Villegas

The Feb. 10 NBA trade deadline is a little over a month away, and point guard Ben Simmons is still a member of the Philadelphia 76ers despite his preseason trade request and his absence from the team that has lasted the entire 2021-22 regular season.

Kyle Neubeck of the Philly Voice reported Friday that the Sacramento Kings could be a trade partner but said that a deal for De'Aaron Fox may have to be a three-teamer that would net the 76ers another player they covet:

"[The 76ers] simply insisted talent and fit both matter.
"Use the Kings as an example. Sacramento is now reportedly open to making De’Aaron Fox and/or Tyrese Haliburton available in the right deals, and those aren’t equal propositions for Philadelphia. In all likelihood, sources say, a deal involving Fox would almost certainly have to be a three-team deal, moving Fox to another party in order to get what the Sixers think they need. And while the Sixers like Haliburton and feel good about his potential fit, the sense is he’s not at the level they’re after for a primary piece in return for Simmons, that the Iowa State product would need to be one part in a more extravagant return."

The 76ers started the season 16-16 but have since won five straight to move into fifth in the Eastern Conference. Having All-Star center Joel Embiid, who has missed 11 games, has certainly helped.

Still, the 76ers don't look like a contender at this point, especially with the surging Chicago Bulls (winners of eight straight to move to 25-10), the star-studded Brooklyn Nets and the defending NBA champion Milwaukee Bucks sitting in the top three in the East.

A trade could help matters, and Simmons is the most attractive potential trade piece. Still, forming a trade that the 76ers feel is suitable for the three-time All-Star hasn't come easy.

Shams Charania of The Athletic did report Dec. 13 that "the 76ers are ramping up their efforts to spark multi-team trade scenarios to move Simmons," citing interest from the New York Knicks, Los Angeles Lakers, Minnesota Timberwolves, Portland Trail Blazers, Sacramento Kings, Indiana Pacers and Cleveland Cavaliers.

Prior to that, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski and Zach Lowe reported that "trade conversations on Ben Simmons [were] gathering momentum in recent days" and that two- and three-team deal structures were on the table.

Ultimately, the 76ers still have time to get something done this season with the trade deadline five weeks away.