The Philadelphia 76ers have been a playoff team this year, but they are far from the 1st seeded team that they were last year. That is due to Ben Simmons' continued absence from the team as he awaits a trade.
There is no doubt that the Philadelphia 76ers would prefer a player that can immediately impact winning to be the trade return for any Ben Simmons move. They have long been linked with Portland Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard. In this article, we provide a trade scenario where Damian Lillard heads over to the Philadelphia 76ers in a Ben Simmons-centered package.
Philadelphia 76ers Receive: Damian Lillard
Portland Trail Blazers Receive: Ben Simmons, Tyrese Maxey, Matisse Thybulle
The Philadelphia 76ers Pair A Superstar With Joel Embiid
The Philadelphia 76ers would definitely prefer to pair Joel Embiid with one top-tier star rather than getting a few good but non-star players in return for Ben Simmons. This package would allow them to do so.
When healthy, Damian Lillard is one of the best perimeter players in the NBA. He is well-known for his long-range shooting, as well as his exploits during clutch moments. Aside from his shooting, Lillard is a capable finisher on the interior and a decent playmaker for his teammates.
Pairing Damian Lillard with Joel Embiid would give the Philadelphia 76ers a one-two punch with which they can compete in the Eastern Conference, similar to Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant. Joel Embiid would reduce the load on Damian Lillard offensively, and allow him to focus on being a 2nd option that takes over at the end of the game.
From the Philadelphia 76ers' perspective, this is a no-brainer deal. The fit between Joel Embiid and Damian Lillard would be amazing, and there is no doubt 76ers fans would love to see this move finally happen.
The Portland Trail Blazers Focus On Acquiring Younger Players For Their Rebuild
The Portland Trail Blazers look primed for a rebuild, and there's no doubt that the 76ers can provide them with some solid young players to help them along.
Obviously, Ben Simmons is the crown jewel of this package. Simmons is a fantastic athlete who plays defense at a DPOY level and is elite at playmaking for others. While his scoring game obviously needs a little bit of work, he is still effective when driving to the rim and scoring in transition.
Tyrese Maxey is a solid guard that has had a breakout year. He has developed into a capable combo guard and is currently putting up 16.7 PPG and 4.4 APG while shooting 39.5% from beyond the arc. There is no doubt that the increased offensive touches he'd receive on the Trail Blazers would allow him to blossom into an even better player.
Matisse Thybulle would be the last young player in this deal. While he is not known for his offense, his perimeter defense is among the best in the league. If he develops his offensive game, he'll be an even better player.
Overall this deal would get the Portland Trail Blazers 3 good young players. In particular, Ben Simmons and Matisse Thybulle would help shore up the team's defense, and they'd fit Chauncey Billups' system. Tyrese Maxey would obviously give them an explosive backcourt featuring himself and Anfernee Simons.
Overall, this is a fantastic deal for the Trail Blazers, as if they execute this trade, they will immediately have a young core that can grow together and develop.