Kings must risk it all with Ben Simmons trade after years of misery
Reports reveal that the Philadelphia 76ers will only give up Ben Simmons if the Sacramento Kings offer a trade package that includes De’Aaron Fox or Tyrese Haliburton. The Kings, understandably, will not budge, even for a Ben Simmons trade.
They both deem Fox and Haliburton as important pieces to their future. Any basketball expert would not disagree with the Kings’ stance. But at the same time, maybe it’s time for the organization to get a little risky by letting one of these players go in exchange for Simmons?
The organization seems to be pleased with their rather safe measures in building a competitive roster. They do not have a penchant for engaging in blockbuster deals that would shake up the entire roster. From the looks of it, they are looking to fortify their squad from the draft and through free-agent signings from year to year.
Its line of front office executives are not like Masai Ujiri of the Toronto Raptors who literally risked it all to get Kawhi Leonard. Nor are they Los Angeles Lakers vice president of basketball operations and general manager Rob Pelinka who gave up a hoard of young guns for Anthony Davis.
There’s nothing wrong with being safe. But given that the Kings have been stuck in a rut for so many years, maybe it’s time to alter their methods. As a reminder, the last time they made the playoffs was in the 2006-07 NBA season. Since then, they were able to pick some serious talent from the draft like DeMarcus Cousins, Tyreke Evans, Isaiah Thomas.
For some reason, not one of these players has tasted the playoffs during their stint with the Kings. At one point, Cousins was even deemed as the next superstar big man of the league. The man was averaging close to 30 points and 10 rebounds per game. Unfortunately, the Kings just failed to capitalize on having so much talent in their squad.
They seem to be trekking the same narrative right now. Just a quick rundown of the Kings’ top players: Fox, Haliburton, Harrison Barnes, Marvin Bagley, Buddy Hield. They’ve had these players for quite some time. Again, they haven’t even come close to a playoff berth. Not even in the play-in tournaments. It should be clear by now that something needs to be done: either a roster tweak or a coaching change.
The fact that Ben Simmons is on the trade block is a golden opportunity. Yes, they will one of their top young stars in exchange for him. But the man is still an extremely good player no matter where you look at it. There are tons of questions about his offense, particularly his jump shot. But there are absolutely no qualms about his playmaking and defense.
Besides, there’s always that risk that De’Aaron Fox might request a trade. He’s one heck of a guard but only a few consider him to be one of the very best. That’s because Fox, in his four years in the NBA, has not made the playoffs nor an All-Star team. The Kings’ poor performance has a lot to do with this.
Winning is all that matters in the league. There’s no such thing as a consolation prize in the NBA. In today’s era where the players seem to have utter control of their fate, the Kings should not just rest on their laurels. They shouldn’t think that just because Fox agreed to a five-year, $163 million contract extension that he’ll be with them in the long run.