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Shams: Blazers Declined Draft-Loaded McCollum Trade for Ben Simmons

Charania says that the Blazers and Sixers have discussed a deal involving picks and perhaps CJ McCollum.

Philadelphia 76ers v Portland Trail Blazers Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images

For months, trade rumors have circulated around the Portland Trail Blazers and Philadelphia 76ers, painting them as potential trade partners for one another in a Ben Simmons-centered deal. Today, The Athletic’s senior NBA insider Shams Charania provided an update on Philadelphia’s brewing situation with their disgruntled star.

According to Charania, the Sixers offered a trade that would have sent Simmons to the Trail Blazers in exchange for a huge number of future draft picks and swaps. That revelation came via video in a breaking news segment:

“The Portland Trail Blazers and Pacers have lead dogs in CJ McCollum and Malcolm Brogdon who could entice the 76ers in a potential package. But neither has gained traction for Philadelphia. The 76ers, I’m told, asked the Trail Blazers for three first-round picks and three Draft swaps as part of a potential package. But Portland rejected that proposal.”

The quote left a little wiggle room in framing, as Charania technically didn’t say that the offer involved McCollum along with the picks and swaps. The verbiage implies it, and salary cap considerations would mandate a large contract returning to the Sixers in any such deal. Either way, it’s clear that, according to Charania, the two franchises have been in contact and have discussed a trade package.

Charania also noted that the 24-year-old Philadelphia guard has been “mentally checked out,” and that if he returned, it would only be with short-term intentions. Simmons is said to have emptied out his home in Philadelphia, signifying that a trade is expected.

The three-time All-Star, is in the middle of a recently-signed, four-year, $147 million maximum contract.