NBA Buzz: Trades, Simmons, Blazers, Harrell, Wizards, Irving

Nets guard Kyrie Irving drives to the basket as 76ers guard/forward Ben Simmons trails.

Another day, another Ben Simmons rumor.

The Blazers and Sixers have had discussions about a deal with Philadelphia reportedly asking for CJ McCollum, three first-round picks, and three additional pick swaps in exchange for Simmons (via Shams Charania).

It’s no secret that the Sixers have a high asking price for Simmons. They’ve been eyeing Damian Lillard from the Blazers all summer and while it once looked like it was a feasible scenario, now, it appears that Lillard won’t request a trade anytime soon (something that would need to occur in order for the franchise to move him).

Sixers management, Doc Rivers, and Rich Paul continue to have discussions about Simmons possibly ending his holdout, though Simmons is “resistant” at this time, per Charania, who adds that Simmons has “mentally checked out” from Philadelphia. Even if Simmons were to report, it may only be with short-term intentions.

Non-Simmons Buzz

The Wizards’ chemistry is something to watch with so many new pieces in Washington, though early on, it appears that everything is going well. Center Daniel Gafford told FortyEightMinutes and other Washington media that he feels the team is doing a good job with communication as they get acclimated to each other. Gaf added that he feels he can learn so much from new teammate Montrezl Harrell, including being “more vocal.”

Speaking of Harrell, the center wasn’t thrilled with his role on the Lakers last season and he’s embracing his new start in Washington. “I didn’t really get to be utilized how I wanted to be last year,” Harrell told FortyEightMinutes and other media via zoom. “I damn near felt like I had a season off. So, I’m using this preseason to really ramp back up and knock off a lot of the rust on my own game, really.”

Kyrie Irving missed the Nets’ preseason home opener with the team listing him as ineligible. It’s been widely reported that Irving may be unvaccinated and that could be the reason he’s not participating in practices or home games (since he would be unable to do so because of a local mandate). It’s hard to get a read on the real situation between him and the Nets, though with him not yet signing a contract extension, he remains trade-eligible and I wouldn’t be surprised if, by the end of the season, that’s the route that the team takes.

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About the Author

Chris Crouse
As a co-owner of, Chris Crouse wears many hats, including editor and marketing director. He previously covered sports business at CNBC and he has covered the NBA for various publications, including SLAM Magazine and Hoops Rumors, in addition to working on the business side of media.

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