Everybody expected the Philadelphia 76ers to be a championship contender, but they haven’t looked like it for the majority of the season. Even when they have spurts of playing at a very high level, this is often followed by inconsistency and seemingly a lack of killer instinct. In fact, this criticism is often pointed towards their two superstar players: Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons. Both players are All-Stars who can do a ton to impact the game, and are some of the most valuable players in the league today.
But Philly might be looking to make some major changes if they don’t win the title this year. With top teams such as the Lakers and Bucks in a better position to compete for a title, Philly might be forced to make the move sooner rather than later. Joel Embiid has been the subject of trade rumors but moving him might not be the best idea. In fact, it might be best to move on from Ben Simmons if they want to bring a title to Philadelphia. Here are the reasons why.
1. Ben Simmons Can’t Shoot
The biggest knock on the game of Ben Simmons is his inability to be a threat from the perimeter. Simmons cannot shoot a lick, and teams have no problem with letting him take long-distance jumpers. It’s about time that we finally understand that this is who Ben Simmons is, and he will never be able to shoot the ball well from deep. While he does almost everything well on the court, this will not work for Philly.
Point guards in the NBA nowadays need to be able to space the floor, since teams can focus in on star players better than ever before. Covering guys like Embiid and Harris will leave Simmons open a lot, which opposing teams will do at any point. Not having a player, who controls the ball the majority of the time, with an effective jumper minimizes the impact of the team’s offense. Especially with Philly’s loss of Jimmy Butler, they are in need of perimeter shooting and scoring. Simmons does not provide that.
2. Building Around Joel Embiid Is Better
While rumors indicated Embiid would be the one moved, Simmons should be the player that they consider. Embiid is simply a better player than Simmons and can have a greater impact on the floor. Embiid can not only shoot better than Simmons but can take it inside and score the ball almost whenever he wants. Not to mention, Embiid can rebound the ball and defend the paint better than most NBA big men.
While Simmons brings valuable playmaking, especially on the break, Embiid has the ability to put up 25-12 on a nightly basis while performing in the clutch. These are some things that Simmons will probably never be able to achieve, even with all his talent in other areas.
In a nutshell, Embiid is a superstar talent already. Allowing Embiid to be the focal point of the team, and surrounding him with shooters, will possibly create a throwback Orlando Magic Finals team albeit with a far more talented Embiid rather than Dwight Howard. Philly should aim to gather an array of long-distance snipers to accommodate Embiid’s ability inside the paint.
3. Ben Simmons Trade Value
Finally, Simmons will have greater trade value around the league. Even though most GMs will probably state that Embiid is a better player, his injury history and style of play might not garner the trade value that Simmons does. Most teams need a well-sized player who can defend the perimeter, and also someone who can control the offense. Simmons provides both of these attributes, and teams looking for a legitimate point-forward might be willing to part ways with valuable young players and shooters that Philly will need.
Simmons is a very popular player as well, and many GMs might feel that they can mold him into an even better player. Truly, the sky is the limit for Ben Simmons but he does not fit in with what Philly wants to do. Moving Simmons to a team with a stock of valuable young players and shooters will help Philly get the pieces they need to perform consistently and finally break through their plateau.