Discussions on Ben Simmons’ future with the Philadelphia 76ers started in Chicago this week, according to Adrian Wojnarowski.
The discussions have reportedly included Klutch Sports CEO/agent Rich Paul and the 76ers front office.
Paul met with president of basketball operations Daryl Morey and general manager Elton Brand at the NBA pre-draft combine to begin evaluating the next steps in Simmons’ 76ers career, Wojnarowski notes.
No trade request has been made, but talks are currently ongoing ahead of the July 29 draft and August free agency.
The 76ers remain committed to keeping Simmons as one of the main pieces of their franchise.
The 24-year-old has four years and $147 million left on his contract.
Simmons and head coach Doc Rivers recently met to discuss a plan to help him improve his skill development, specifically his shooting.
Rivers believes that this summer will be different for Simmons, who struggled from the foul line and on offense in the seven-game series against the Atlanta Hawks.
Not only is Simmons willing to do the work, but the 76ers have a plan to address his shooting woes that will involve doing “the right work” and doing it “the right way.”
Despite Simmons scoring 19 points and shooting 35 percent from the free-throw line in the last three games of the Hawks series, his trade value in the marketplace is still “significant,” sources tell Wojnarowski.
Teams have been gauging the 76ers interest in trade packages, but the 76ers remain reluctant to break up the Joel Embiid-Simmons pairing without getting a fair return and using the resources necessary to help Simmons improve his offense.
“We have a very strong group we believe in,” said Morey. “None of us can predict the future of what’s going to happen in any, in any place. We love what Ben brings, we love what Joel brings, we love what Tobias [Harris] brings. In terms of what’s next, we’re going to do what’s best for the 76ers to give us the best chance to win the championship with every single player on the roster.”
Morey also added, “I think it’s pretty straightforward what certain players need to improve. … We need to be a better offensive team.”