• Ben Simmons may be traded in the offseason
  • The Philly management have "opened up trade conversations" for Simmons
  • Five NBA teams are named as initial suitors

Ben Simmons’ time with the Philadelphia 76ers may be coming to an end earlier than expected.

The Athletic’s Shams Charania, via Mike Chiari of Bleacher Report, reports that the Philadelphia 76ers have “opened up trade conversations” and “engaged with teams” regarding the Australian point-forward.

Charania also mentioned that an anonymous source said that the team needs at least an “All-Star caliber player” in exchange for Simmons.

However, the problem is that perceptions of Simmons’ offensive ability have seen its lowest in the past weeks.

The three-time All-Star’s trade value has cratered after his dismissal performance in the 2021 NBA playoffs.

His stats are generally down this season as he averaged 14.3 points, 7.2 rebounds, 6.2 assists, and 1.6 steals.

Simmons really isn’t expected to be a scoring machine, but when it matters most, he has to carry the load and not just make plays for teammates.

In the postseason, he averaged 8.8 assists and 7.9 rebounds while scoring only 11.9 points per game with a dismal free throw shooting outing of 34.2 percent.

His flaws as a potential two-way player were even more exposed as the Sixers fell to the Atlanta Hawks in seven games after averaging just 9.9 points per game.

It has been speculated before that Simmons’ hesitancy to shoot the ball may be traced back to a confidence problem, instead of his shooting mechanics.

Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Simmons’ agent Rich Paul was meeting with the Sixers during the NBA Draft Combine, but no mentions of trade talks or his agency wanting him going elsewhere.

Marc Stein reported that there are several teams who would want the 24-year-old Simmons on their roster as he is still relatively young and his defensive capabilities rank among the best in the NBA.

He noted that the Cleveland Cavaliers, Indiana Pacers, Sacramento Kings, Toronto Raptors and Minnesota Timberwolves are all on the list of potential suitors.

If we were to follow the Sixers’ requirement of an “All-Star caliber player,” the leaders here would be the Pacers and Raptors followed by the Kings, Cavaliers and Timberwolves.

Indiana could trade away Domantas Sabonis to upgrade their playmaking depth, so that Malcolm Brogdon will have help in making plays for the team.

The Raptors will have to give up Pascal Siakam and Kyle Lowry for Simmons, launching them into a mini-rebuild.

The Kings, Cavaliers and Timberwolves all have talented teams, but they might not have the assets to entice the Sixers to trade Simmons.

Ben Simmons Draymond Green 76ers Warriors
Ben Simmons #25 of the Philadelphia 76ers is fouled by Draymond Green #23 of the Golden State Warriors at Chase Center on March 23, 2021 in San Francisco, California. Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Charania mentions that there is “robust” interest for Simmons across the league, which could suggest that the team can definitely find a trade partner in the offseason.

Simmons has no one else to blame but himself for his failures but then again, a move away from Philadelphia might be in his best interests in order to fulfill the potential that fans have been expecting from him to tap into by now.