Ben Simmons situation is getting ugly.

Supposedly he has told them he wants out and won't report to training camp. This has parallels to the Harden situation, except Harden is much better and Simmons isn't forcing himself to a single team. At least not that we know of. While we could end this at laughing at the 76ers again, I had a different thought.

Would we be able to take advantage of this?

While there are some here like myself who still like the idea of Simmons on this team, I know there are some on this board that wouldn't take him if he was free. I'm not here to try and convince you. We've all probably had those conversations anyway.

The thing is Ben's value is spiraling from his already devalued position. And the longer this drama goes on, the worse that will get. And based on recent examples of disgruntled stars trying to leave, you would think that the 76ers would get more and more desperate to move him. I bet he would be cheaper in a couple weeks then he ever would have been before. And so on. As long as Simmons remains in Philadelphia, this will only snowball until he is dealt. How cheap could a team get Simmons for?

And then I had a really crazy thought...

Would it be possible for the Celtics to get Simmons without giving up a single core player?

Core players being defined as the Jays, Smart, and Timelord I guess. And for the sake of spacing, I left out the obvious salary match contract in Horford because it made more roster sense than trade sense. So trying to make it work without including those 5, I created some stupid 3 team trade just to see if it was possible:

And from a salary perspective, it is indeed possible. It's also a really dumb trade. Most trades where you send out like 6 players to get 1 are. Replace certain players, maybe find a different third team with a more ideal, and gift a punch of draft picks around and maybe you can make it less dumb? Of course, many who are a fan of pursuing a third star like Beal would be against blowing such assets on a player like Simmons in the first place. I would personally prefer that to someone like Beal, but maybe I'm in the minority. Not that I see this happening.

Anyway, I didn't make the trade to say it could happen. I just did it because I don't know what the limits are on this situation anymore and I was trying to see what was theoretically possible. As Ben's value plummets, he gets closer and closer to the theoretical bottom line. The question is how close does he get to that bottom line value before even the stubborn 76ers are forced to deal him?

What is the least we could get away with in a Simmons trade now? How about in two weeks? In a month? That's just where my thought process is going.

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