NBA Rumors: Ben Simmons Could Form Pelicans' 'Superteam' With Brandon Ingram & Zion Williamson

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JB Baruelo

For years, All-Star point guard Ben Simmons was viewed as one of the players that would lead the Philadelphia 76ers back to title contention. However, after a disappointing performance in the 2021 NBA Playoffs, rumors have started swirling around Simmons' future in the City of Brotherly Love. From being a franchise cornerstone, the former No. 1 pick is now considered the odd man out in Philadelphia.

So far, Simmons is one of the NBA superstars who are highly expected to be moved before the 2022 NBA trade deadline.

Ben Simmons To New Orleans Pelicans

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One of the dark-horse trade destinations for Simmons is the New Orleans Pelicans. In a recent article, Lee Tran of Fadeaway World suggested a three-team blockbuster trade idea that would enable Simmons to join forces with Brandon Ingram and Zion Williamson in New Orleans this season.

In the proposed trade scenario, the Pelicans would receive Simmons, the Sixers would get Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and the Oklahoma City Thunder would obtain Devonte' Graham, Matisse Thybulle, Jaxson Hayes, Nickeil Alexander-Walker, Tomas Satoransky, three first-round picks, and two second-round picks.

Pelicans Create 'Superteam'

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Though it would cost them a plethora of precious trade assets, Tran believes that the proposed three-team trade is worth exploring for the Pelicans. When the trio of Simmons, Ingram, and Williamson is 100 percent healthy, Tran thinks that the Pelicans could form their own "superteam" in New Orleans.

"If the New Orleans Pelicans were to get Ben Simmons, they would definitely become a superteam when fully healthy," Tran wrote. "They'd have two other All-Stars in Brandon Ingram and Zion Williamson, as well as an extremely underrated center in Jonas Valanciunas. Giving up some young prospects and a few picks for that to happen seems like a solid proposition."

Ben Simmons Boosts Pelicans' Offense & Defense

Simmons would be an intriguing acquisition for the Pelicans. Despite his shooting woes, Simmons remains a solid two-way contributor in the league. His potential arrival in New Orleans is expected to boost the Pelicans' performance on both ends of the floor, giving them a very reliable third scorer, as well as an incredible playmaker, rebounder, and defender.

Last season, Simmons averaged 14.3 points, 7.2 rebounds, 6.9 assists, and 1.6 steals while shooting 55.7 percent from the field, per ESPN. It would still take time for Simmons, Ingram, and Williamson to find the perfect chemistry but once they mesh well on the floor, it would only be a matter of time before the Pelicans start competing for the NBA championship title again.

Why The Sixers & The Thunder Would Make The Trade

Though they would also have to give up Thybulle and a future first-round pick, the proposed three-way deal is a no-brainer for the Sixers. It would enable them to swap Simmons for another young All-Star caliber player in Gilgeous-Alexander. With his ability to efficiently knock down shots from beyond the arc, SGA would nicely fit alongside Joel Embiid in Philadelphia.

Meanwhile, the Thunder would only consider such trade if they no longer consider SGA as the centerpiece of the next title-contending team that they are trying to build in Oklahoma City. By sacrificing SGA, the Thunder would be receiving assets that could help them speed up their rebuilding plans.