3 Trades for Phoenix Suns to Get Involved in Ben Simmons Sweepstakes

Phoenix Suns, Ben Simmons. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Phoenix Suns, Ben Simmons. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /
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Phoenix Suns, Ben Simmons
Phoenix Suns, Ben Simmons (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

Phoenix Suns Help Send Ben Simmons to Sacramento Kings, get Marvin Bagley

With their abundance of young players, but little success and front office turbulence, Sacramento has long been a popular destination for this Simmons storm to make landfall.

The Kings already possess two talented point guards with Tyrese Haliburton and De’Aaron Fox. But even with their undeniable upsides, the franchise has little to show for it. Since pairing them up, Sacramento has sleepwalked around with a 43-58 record. Before that with just Fox, they put up an equally disappointing 119-173 record.

But even on top of their unsuccessful last few years, almost no other team looks like a bigger mess than the Kings right now. They own a 12-17 record, and already fired their head coach Luke Walton.

At some point, this team must come to terms with the flaws in their rebuild, and fix them before everything caves in on itself. That starts with switching things up here by swapping ball handlers.

As a more established point guard with playoff experience, Ben Simmons gives the Kings stronger footing at the position. Being the younger player and better shooter, Haliburton sticks around to work with him rather than Fox. Haliburton possesses more room to grow, a smaller contract, and a more compatible game to Simmons’ with his shooting touch. Fox also likely resembles the preferred guard for Philadelphia to attain with his greater experience which fits their “win now” agenda.

Simmons also represents an All-NBA defender, having finished second in Defensive Player of the Year voting last season. With the Kings currently surrendering 114.0 points per game, the second most in the entire league, Simmons’s arrival immediately remedies their most glaring wound.

For Philly, they secure a starting-level point guard with All-Star upside, which resembles an immediate upgrade to what Simmons is giving them now. The Kings also send over their first rounder to balance out the talent disparity, and the Suns send Abdel Nader to balance the cap.

But amidst all that, Phoenix walks away with Marvin Bagley, another disgruntled piece within Sacramento’s failed rebuild. As a power forward, he adds some depth to Phoenix’s thinnest position. Meanwhile, the Kings land Jalen Smith. Both he and Bagley resemble underperforming lottery-picked big men, but with this swap, both get fresh starts, which might help them turn things around.

The Suns most likely cannot extend Bagley after this season, but giving up Nader and Smith for a high-end rental immediately improves their chances to win it all this year nonetheless.