Report: Damian Lillard would like to play with Sixers star Ben Simmons

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The Philadelphia 76ers and the Portland Trail Blazers are two teams who could definitely use a bit of a change to their current situations. While the Sixers are still regarded as one of the top contenders in the East, they have got to figure out the Ben Simmons situation as he still prefers to be traded.

The Blazers, on the other hand, are off to a tough start at 11-13 and they have just fired GM Neil Olshey which could have implications for the Sixers. That could make Damian Lillard available to be moved out of Portland, but there is no guarantee. The star point guard has been always loyal to the Blazers and he will give the organization every chance to work this out.

There has always been the possibility of Philadelphia and Portland just swapping Simmons and Lillard, but per Shams Charania of The Athletic and The Stadium as well as Sam Amick, Lillard actually prefers to play with Simmons. That means Philadelphia would have to look into C.J. McCollum as their next best option.

Per Charania:

Multiple sources have told The Athletic that Lillard would like to play with Philadelphia 76ers three-time All-Star Ben Simmons. The Trail Blazers’ league-worst defense would instantly improve, and sharing a backcourt with a non-shooter could work given Lillard’s high-volume usage.

Sources say the Trail Blazers, under Olshey, discussed the framework of a trade for Simmons, moving CJ McCollum, a first-round draft pick and a young player such as Nassir Little or Anfernee Simons to Philadelphia. The 76ers, sources said, at one point asked the Trail Blazers for McCollum and multiple draft picks and multiple draft swaps, which Portland rejected. Olshey maintained significant confidence in the roster he constructed. Now, it’s unclear if there’s a deal to be had with the 76ers.

The Sixers would obviously prefer to acquire Lillard. He has been the object of president Daryl Morey’s affection ever since Simmons officially requested a trade. His partnering with Joel Embiid would be pretty much unstoppable with their combined skills. The Blazers have also expressed concern in the past about a Simmons and Lillard pairing.

However, McCollum would give Philadelphia exactly what the team needs and that is a guy who can create shots from the perimeter and be able to the guy they can turn to next to Embiid. The Portland and Philadelphia situation continues to be one for everybody to keep an eye on.

This post originally appeared on Sixers Wire! Follow us on Facebook!

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