ESPN Insider Urges Warriors to Trade for Controversial 3-x All-Star

Ben Simmons, Golden State Warriors

Getty Ben Simmons of the Philadelphia 76ers, has been linked with the Golden State Warriors.

If you follow the NBA on any level, then you’re familiar with the situation surrounding Ben Simmons and the Philadelphia 76ers. You’ve probably also seen Simmons linked to your team in a plethora of mock trades of the last few months too.

That’s what happens when a bona fide star is available on the trade market; every team finds itself linked to the player in one way or another. Yet, one franchise that simply cannot shake being linked with Simmons is the Golden State Warriors. Perhaps it’s because of the young talent the Warriors have to offer in any potential trade or that there’s a perceived urgency to build one last dynasty around Steph Curry.

Heck, it could even be other teams trying to destabilize one of the hottest teams in the NBA right now.

Regardless of the reasons behind it, Simmons and the Warriors are like those two kids in high school who flirt with passing glances but deny all interest when questioned by their peers. No matter how you slice it, Simmons and the Warriors will find themselves linked together until a trade for the All-Star is finalized, or he backs down on his stance against the 76ers.

However, one NBA Insider recently went on record to state he believes the Warriors and Simmons would be an exciting fit together. Speaking on his podcast, Zach Lowe examined Simmons’ potential fit with the Warriors when speaking with his guest Howard Beck.

Zach Lowe Intrigued by the Prospect of Simmons in Golden State

Whenever he offers an opinion, you can always rest assured that Zach Lowe has thought long and hard about his reasons behind it. So, when discussing Simmons on his lastest podcast with Howard Beck, Lowe did his best to answer the burning questions Warriors have surrounding the two-time defensive first-team guard/forward.

A glance around social media, and you quickly understand that most people’s trepidation surrounding a potential Simmons trade is usually due to a perceived spacing issue with him on the floor. Considering Simmons is a career 14.7% three-point shooter and only attempts 0.1 three per game, it would be fair if you were also concerned about his lack of shooting and floor spacing.

However, Lowe doesn’t see the shooting to be a huge roadblock for the Warriors: “The basic rules of spacing not applying to the Warriors is why I have been a relative optimist on the potential fit of Ben Simmons in Golden State. I mean, it’s been a very divisive topic among Warriors people internally and externally. Let me be clear. I don’t think there is anything that’s going to—I think the Ben Simmons trade thing is so complicated by all the noise and mess around it that I don’t even know what teams are interested in him. How do they proceed at this point?”

What Lowe is getting at here is that with shooters such as Steph Curry and Klay Thompson, having a couple of non-shooters who excel at other areas of the game isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

Lowe continued to elaborate on his thoughts regarding Simmons and the Warriors:

I don’t see any deal there right now for the Warriors. I am just saying, I think it is an interesting theoretical exercise because people immediately go to, ‘Well, how can Draymond, how can you play two non-shooters in Draymond and Ben Simmons?’ They’re starting two non-shooters right now. And the lineup has been awesome essentially forever. They play two non-shooters all the time with Steph Curry because they have Steph Curry. And those non-shooters are often some of the smartest, best passers and defenders in the history of basketball. And Ben Simmons is a very smart passer who is a great defender. I think the fit could be very good.

Simmons has often been compared to Draymond Green, usually when discussing the 76ers star’s ideal role within a team. That isn’t saying that a potential Simmons arrival in Golden State would spell the end for Green – they’re both too versatile for that – but it does give the Warriors a foundational piece to rebuild around when their current star core eventually calls time on their illustrious careers.

Simmons Still Possesses All-Star Quality

Most of Simmons’s discourse is centered around him passing up an open scoring opportunity during the 2020-21 NBA playoffs, a mistake many believe ultimately cost the 76ers the game.

In a recent interview with Tyler R. Tynes of GQ, Dwight Howard gave his thoughts on Simmons receiving the blame for that moment.

“As a competitor, yeah I was p***** off [laughs]. Who wouldn’t be? I wanted him to go up and try to score. But he didn’t. And that wasn’t the only reason we lost the game. So I can’t blame that whole situation on him. It’s very unfortunate,” Howard explained.

Despite his mistakes during last season’s playoffs, many forget or overlook the fact that Simmons averaged 14.3 points, 6.9 assists, and 7.2 rebounds per game (according to Basketball-Reference) while being one of the league’s best perimeter defenders. Coupled with Simmons’ young age, it’s that level of production that has 76ers President of Basketball Operations, Daryl Morey, being steadfast in negotiations as he holds out for a star-studded trade.

Herein lies the second issue for Warriors fans. Even if Simmons was a trade target, and the front office believed he would similarly elevate their roster to how Kevin Durant did previously, there’s no telling what Morey would ask for in return.

.As such, while Lowe believes Simmons could potentially be a good fit for the team, it’s unlikely we see a trade anytime soon, be that with the Warriors or another NBA team.

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