NBA Rumors: 76ers Ownership Denied Elton Brand's Request to Trade Ben Simmons

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistApril 17, 2019

PHILADELPHIA, PA - APRIL 15: Ben Simmons #25 of the Philadelphia 76ers reacts during action against the Brooklyn Nets in the fourth quarter of Game Two of Round One of the 2019 NBA Playoffs at the Wells Fargo Center on April 15, 2019 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The 76ers defeated the Nets 145-123. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

During the 2018-19 season, Philadelphia 76ers general manager Elton Brand reportedly approached the team's ownership about potentially trading point guard Ben Simmons but was "immediately shut down." 

Chris Sheridan of the New York Daily News reported the news, citing an anonymous source who said ownership told Brand that Simmons and Joel Embiid were not to be traded even if it landed the team Anthony Davis.

The 76ers denied that Brand even approached ownership about moving on from Simmons.

Sheridan's column does not paint a pretty picture for the 76ers.

He said head coach Brett Brown "lost the locker room following the acquisition of Jimmy Butler," writing it was never more apparent than when former San Antonio Spurs player Bruce Bowen addressed the team with a speech about "San Antonio Spurs culture" that apparently "went over like a lead balloon" and led to a confrontation between Embiid and Bowen.

As for Simmons, the report noted he didn't actually miss a March 25 game against the Orlando Magic because of a stomach virus, as previously reported, but because he was partying the previous night.

"I am aware of it," Brown said about Sheridan's story, per ESPN's Dave McMenamin. "I have not read it, and I won't, and I have nothing to say about it."

Simmons was also aware but didn't seem too concerned: "I'm not worried about it. You're talking about the regular season. I'm talking about the playoffs right now. Unless you want to talk about something else, [go] somewhere else with it. It's the playoffs right now."

The LSU product is just 22 years old and figures to be a building block alongside Embiid for years to come. The 76ers have gone as he's gone in their first two postseason games against the Nets, losing Game 1 when he scored just nine points with three assists and winning Game 2 when he notched a triple-double.

His facilitating and desire to attack the rim were major reasons Philadelphia poured in 51 third-quarter points during its Game 2 blowout victory.

Maybe Brand did at least consider trading him at one point, but Simmons seems focused on the playoffs and leading the 76ers to the NBA Finals for the first time since 2001.


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