The Los Angeles Lakers have the trade assets to acquire Philadelphia 76ers star Ben Simmons.
What the 2021 Eastern Conference Finals loss to the Atlanta Hawks showed us is Simmons and 76ers center Joel Embiid’s games are not compatible. Simmons needs to go to a team where he can handle the ball, distribute and not be asked to take shots he does not feel comfortable attempting. The Lakers need a ball-handler who can play some outstanding defense as well.
Here is what the Lakers would have to potentially give up to land Simmons in a blockbuster trade.
Los Angeles Lakers: What it will take to trade for Ben Simmons this summer
For the Lakers to land Simmons this offseason, Los Angeles will have to be comfortable with parting ways with three-to-four of the following five assets: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Talen Horton-Tucker, Kyle Kuzma, the No. 22 overall pick in the 2021 NBA Draft or a future first-round pick in 2021. Making a trade with Philadelphia will largely deplete the Lakers’ trade asset reservoir.
Of those five assets, the likeliest trade the Lakers can make for Simmons is either Caldwell-Pope or Kuzma, Horton-Tucker as a part of a sign-and-trade and this summer’s No. 22 pick. With this trade, the 76ers would get a proven veteran, an on-the-rise player and a pick to take whoever they want. If it takes all three players and either first-round pick, then that is what it will take.
A big three of Simmons, LeBron James and Anthony Davis is possible, but will come at a price.