It’s been a big season for the Philadelphia 76ers so far with the side under a lot more pressure to perform now that they have acquired Jimmy Butler. The addition of Butler has turned the side into a very realistic Finals contender in an Eastern Conference that doesn’t involve LeBron James.
However, ever since that memorable blockbuster trade with the Timberwolves, a weakness of the Sixers has been revealed. Floor Spacing is a genuine problem for the 76ers right now with the side really needing to find another quality shooter. Butler and Embiid have managed to find some good team chemistry together but that has unfortunately left Rookie of the Year, Ben Simmons who has always struggled with outside shots as the odd man out.
Zach Lowe of ESPN has revealed that there is a call around the league for Philadelphia to consider trading away Simmons for some quality shooters.
“Every time the Sixers lose a high-profile game — especially to Boston — there are calls across the media for them to trade Simmons. Embiid is the superior player. Philly has built its half-court offense mostly around him. Simmons’ lack of a jump shot becomes more of a liability in the postseason, when the game slows. The young cornerstones do not complement each other, at least not as much as you’d like.”
According to Lowe, the talk around trading Simmons will continue until the franchise can prove they make the Finals with this current line-up. Simmons, Embiid, and Butler are all highly talented players, but it is taking some time for the three stars to gel together on the court.
It’s a tough decision for a team that’s traveling very well in the Standings but are still a step behind some of their main competitors. If the Sixers are intent on winning a championship in the next couple of years, then they should at least investigate the possibilities of trading away their former Number 1 Draft pick.
A potential team to trade with is the Denver Nuggets who sit a top of the Western Conference standings with a brilliant start to the season. Zach Lowe believes that Jamal Murray and Gary Harris may be a possible swap for Simmons between the two teams.
“If you dreamt up a Simmons-for-multiple-shooters deal, you might land upon a pairing like Gary Harris and Jamal Murray — 3-point gunners who make plays off the bounce.”
It would certainly help the main weakness of Floor Spacing and be a very handy addition when it comes to three-pointers. Both Murray and Harris are currently shooting 33.2 percent from beyond the arc which is something the Sixers are lacking a little bit of.
The Nuggets would certainly consider looking into acquiring the former number one draft pick but it’s hard to know whether the franchise will make any moves right now that would disrupt their momentum. Denver Nuggets have won their first 28 of 40 games this season giving themselves a serious chance of making the Finals and stopping the Golden State Warriors from a three-peat.
It’s not a move that either team would want to jump right into straight away but it’s something to think about before the trade deadline considering that both sides have the possibility of winning this year’s NBA championship.