NBA Rumors: Proposed Three-Team Blockbuster Would Involve Brandon Ingram, Damian Lillard & Ben Simmons

Brandon Ingram and Ben Simmons playing against each other during All-Star game
Gettyimages | Jonathan Daniel
Basketball

After the 2020-21 NBA season officially came to an end, all eyes are now on the moves that teams would make in the 2021 offseason. As of now, several big names are believed to be available on the trading block, including All-Star point guard Ben Simmons of the Philadelphia 76ers. Since falling short of achieving their main goal last season, rumors have been continuously swirling around Simmons and his future with the Sixers.

However, the Sixers aren't planning to move Simmons just for the sake of getting him out of Phiadelphia. If they move him, it would only be in a deal that would allow them to acquire another All-Star caliber player that would complement Joel Embiid on the court.

Hypothetical Three-Team Blockbuster Involving Ben Simmons

Ben Simmons running the Sixers' offense
Gettyimages | Kevin C. Cox

In a recent article, Lucas Johnson of Fansided's The Sixer Sense came up with a hypothetical three-team blockbuster trade idea that the Sixers, Portland Trail Blazers, and the New Orleans Pelicans could explore in the 2021 offseason.

In the proposed trade scenario, the Sixers would get Brandon Ingram, Robert Covington, and a 2025 first-round pick, the Trail Blazers would receive Simmons, Jaxson Hayes, Nickeil Alexander-Walker, Kira Lewis Jr., the No. 10 pick in the 2021 NBA Draft, a 2022 first-round pick, and a 2024 first-round pick, while the Pelicans would acquire Damian Lillard, Shake Milton, and George Hill.

Joel Embiid Gets New All-Star Running Mate Who Can Shoot

Brandon Ingram shooting from the perimeter
Gettyimages | Michael Reaves

Swapping Simmons for a younger All-Star like Ingram would be an interesting move for the Sixers. Ingram may doesn't have playoff experience yet, but he would be a much better superstar running mate for Embiid than Simmons. Though he's not an elite defender like Simmons, Ingram is a prolific scorer, a decent playmaker, rebounder, and a reliable three-point shooter.

Last season, Ingram averaged 23.8 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 4.9 assists while shooting 46.6 percent from the field and 38.1 percent from beyond the arc, per ESPN. In addition to Ingram, the Sixers would also be bringing back veteran three-and-D wingman Covington in Philadelphia and obtain a future first-rounder that they could use as a trade chip to further solidify their core.

Pelicans Pair Zion Williamson With Damian Lillard

Damian Lillard on his way to the basket
Gettyimages | Pool

Though it would cost them Ingram and a plethora of precious trade assets, the proposed three-team blockbuster deal would make a lot of sense for the Pelicans, especially if they want to keep Zion Williamson happy in New Orleans. Pairing Williamson with a legitimate superstar like Lillard would tremendously boost the Pelicans' performance on the offensive end of the floor and increase their chances of ending their playoff drought in the 2021-22 NBA season.

Aside from Lillard, the Pelicans would also be adding a young contributor in Milton and a veteran backup for Lillard in Hill.

Trail Blazers Obtain Assets To Undergo Full-Scale Rebuild

Ben Simmons screams after team's victory
Gettyimages | Tim Nwachukwu

Meanwhile, the suggested three-way trade would be worth considering for the Trail Blazers if Lillard is no longer staying in Portland and they want to undergo a full-scale rebuild. Aside from acquiring a new centerpiece in Simmons and three future draft assets, the Trail Blazers would also be adding three young and promising talents in Lewis Jr., Hayes, and Alexander-Walker who could all be part of their long-term plan.

Though it wouldn't put him closer to winning his first NBA championship title, being traded to a rebuilding team may also be beneficial for Simmons. Having a fresh start in Portland would give him plenty of time to address the major flaws in his game and could help return to the right path to becoming a legitimate superstar in the league.