Where will Ben Simmons play next season? Many signs pointed towards the three-time All-Star suiting up for the Sixers once again to start the season, but Simmons seems willing to play anywhere but Philadelphia next year.
While Simmons has garnered interest from teams such as the San Antonio Spurs, Minnesota Timberwolves, the Toronto Raptors, and more, one Western Conference executive believes the young star would like to remain out West, where Simmons has been working out all offseason long.
"Ben Simmons says he refuses to play for the Sixers," says an anonymous executive according to Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer. "He wants to go to one of the three California teams. There’s so much bad blood between him and the team.”
If that's the case, then Simmons would like an opportunity to join either the Los Angeles Lakers, Sacramento Kings, or the Golden State Warriors.
Simmons' reported desire to play out West is no surprise. After all, he just bought a multi-million dollar mansion outside of Los Angeles. In addition to having a new house out near LA, Simmons has spent all of his offseasons out there in previous years, including this one.
While Simmons will more than likely get traded at some point before next season, his chances of landing in California aren't all that high right now. While the Warriors and the Kings have expressed interest and were labeled as two of a handful of teams that talked shop with Daryl Morey regarding Simmons, neither team is willing to meet the asking price of several young players and a stockpile of picks.
Morey and the Sixers would certainly settle on or even prefer an All-Star caliber player to swap Simmons with, but neither Sacramento nor Golden State is willing to give up any of their core guys as well.
As for the Lakers, they've made a ton of moves this offseason already. In previous years, many believed Simmons would do all he could to join the Lakers -- especially now that his former mentor LeBron James plays for them. However, the Lakers don't have what the Sixers are looking for and have more than likely moved on from the idea of gunning for Simmons at this point, if they've even thought about it at all.
Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him for live updates on Twitter: @JGrasso_.