With the NBA trade deadline now over, potential trades that fell through at the last minute are now being exposed to the public. And the following trade would have broken the internet.
76ers, Pelicans Reportedly Had Conversation On Ben Simmons For Anthony Davis https://t.co/xrDj5babi2— RealGM (@RealGM) February 8, 2019
For the Pelicans, it is obvious why they would offer such a talented player to the 76ers. A few days leading up to the deadline, Davis and his camp revealed that they sought a trade out of New Orleans, and you could imagine that the team started making calls to almost every team with tradable assets on its roster in short order (most notably, the Los Angeles Lakers).
As to why the 76ers may have been willing to give up Simmons, that is the big question. While it is impossible to deny Davis' greatness, Simmons is also an amazing player himself, has a significantly cheaper contract, and is only beginning to come into his own as a two-way threat. If the 76ers had dealt him, the team would not have lost a top-tier facilitator and versatile defender, which would have made it harder to get Davis involved in the paint where Joel Embiid also resides.
Sources: Clippers and Sixers have agreed to trade Tobias Harris, Boban Marjanovic, Mike Scott for Landry Shamet, Wilson Chandler, Mike Muscala, 2020 first-rounder, 2021 unprotected 1st via Miami and two second rounders.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 6, 2019
It is clear that the 76ers are in win-now mode, but shipping off Ben Simmons for Anthony Davis might have been a little too extreme.