Philadelphia 76ers Rumors
And league executives contacted by B/R continue to mention the possibility of the Sixers holding onto Simmons, should a desirable offer still fail to arise during the draft, in the hopes of Damian Lillard ultimately seeking to leave Portland. Talks between the Raptors and Sixers are considered to be the most advanced of any early conversations Philadelphia has had for the 25-year-old All-Star.
One other significant shift on the Simmons front: There was talk that 76ers president of basketball operations Daryl Morey would be willing to start the season with Simmons to rehab his value before a midseason deal. That idea now seems untenable to executives based on discussions with Philadelphia.
PhillyVoice reached out to multiple team sources on Monday morning in wake of the report, and received pretty firm denials at every stop. “We talked to Ben on his birthday a couple of days ago, we’ve been in touch with him throughout the summer,” one source said. “We’re going to send some training personnel out to see him this summer, too…we have good dialogue with Ben, his team, and his family.”
The Heat, New Orleans, Dallas, the Knicks, Philadelphia and the Lakers are all believed to have interest. And Lowry would have interest in each of those teams at the right dollar amount, according to a source briefed on his plans. A return to Toronto is considered much less likely, according to the source.
A league source said the Sixers have expressed interest in acquiring Lowry. However, the Lakers, Dallas Mavericks, New Orleans Pelicans, and Miami Heat are also reportedly expected to be top suitors.
Teams around the league will eagerly await his decision. If he becomes available, he is not just a guy but the guy this summer — unless, of course, the market for Lillard starts to crescendo. The Warriors, 76ers, Heat and Hawks could all get in on the mix, according to sources. Others would certainly inquire, even if the list may not be as robust as it could have been if the Wizards pulled the trigger on a Beal trade a year ago … before the Nets gave up pieces for James Harden, the Bucks gave up ones for Holiday, the Nuggets gave up ones for Aaron Gordon and the Bulls gave up ones for Nikola Vucevic.