NBA Rumors: Suns Could Acquire Ben Simmons For Package Centered On Chris Paul

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JB Baruelo

Philadelphia 76ers point guard Ben Simmons is expected to be one of the hottest commodities on the trade market before the 2022 NBA trade deadline. Despite strong efforts from the Sixers to convince him to stay, Simmons seems determined to leave the City of Brotherly Love.

Though he has already joined the Sixers' in their previous practices, the former No. 1 pick is yet to play a single game in the 2021-22 NBA season. With his continuous absence, the Sixers recently decided to resume fining him for every game he misses.

Ben Simmons To Phoenix Suns

In a recent article, Grant Hughes of Bleacher Report created a list of NBA teams that need to trade for Simmons the most before the 2022 NBA trade deadline. These include last year's NBA Finalists, the Phoenix Suns. The Suns may currently have Chris Paul as their starting point guard but if they want to take a "light-years approach" in extending their run, Hughes believes that they should strongly consider swapping CP3 for Simmons.

Simmons may still have plenty of flaws in his game, but he perfectly fits the timeline of the Suns' core of Devin Booker, Mikal Bridges, and DeAndre Ayton.

Ben Simmons Boosts Suns' Struggling Defense

Simmons would be an interesting addition to the Suns. Despite his shooting woes, he remains a solid two-way contributor in the league. He would give the Suns a reliable scorer, a great rebounder, playmaker, and lockdown defender. Last season, he averaged 14.3 points, 7.2 rebounds, 6.9 assists, and 1.6 steals while shooting 55.7 percent from the field, per ESPN.

The successful acquisition of Simmons before the 2022 NBA trade deadline is expected to improve the Suns' mediocre defense that currently ranks No. 15 in the league, allowing 104.6 points per 100 possessions, per ESPN.

Sixers Get An 'All-Star' For Ben Simmons

Meanwhile, though he's already on the downside of his career, Hughes thinks that Paul still satisfies the Sixers' "transformative or bust" asking price for Simmons. Paul would give the Sixers a veteran All-Star with more than a decade of playoff experience.

CP3 would immediately fill the hole that Simmons would be leaving at the Sixers' backcourt. Aside from being a prolific scorer and an incredible playmaker, Paul is also an elite three-point shooter, making him a great fit with the face of the Sixers' franchise, Joel Embiid.

Will The Suns Make The Trade?

As of now, there's no indication that the Suns are planning to trade Paul for Simmons before the 2022 NBA trade deadline. As Hughes, noted, the Suns are only expected to consider such trade if they aren't confident that they have what it takes to fully dominate the Western Conference and capture the Larry O'Brien Trophy this season.

Compared to last season, their quest for the NBA championship title has become more difficult, especially with the emergence of the Los Angeles Lakers and the Golden State Warriors on the West Coast. Instead of keeping an aging star, the Suns could replace him with a young franchise cornerstone who could be part of their long-term plans.