Basketball Wiretap

Marvin Bagley's Agent Criticizes Treatment By Kings

Oct 19, 2021 8:26 PM

Marvin Bagley's agent issued a public statement critical of the Sacramento Kings after it was determined he wouldn't be in the rotation to start the season.

"Sacramento has informed Marvin Bagley he is not in the opening night rotation, which is completely baffling," Jeff Schwartz said in a statement. "It's clear they have no plans for him in the future. And yet, passed on potential deals at last year's deadline and this summer based on 'value.' Instead they chose to bring him back but not to play him, a move completely contradictory to their 'value' argument."

The statement came just short of publicly requesting a trade, but Schwartz has attempted to do that behind the scenes for more than a year.

Luke Walton has elected to play smaller lineups this preseason, mostly to feature three-guard lineups, and it has squeezed Bagley's playing time for the time being.

Begley went second overall in 2018.

"This is a case study in mismanagement by the Kings organization," Schwartz said.

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

Tags: Marvin Bagley III, Sacramento Kings, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Damian Lillard: I'm Not Leaving Portland

Oct 19, 2021 4:12 PM

On the eve of the 21-22 regular season, Damian Lillard responded to a question about the possibility of trade speculation if the Portland Trail Blazers get off to a slow start.

“I’ll answer that the same way I answered it on media day: I’m not leaving Portland," said Damian Lillard. "It’s an easy thing and a popular thing to say but it’s not gonna happen."

There were reports over the offseason that Lillard was close to requesting a trade from the Blazers, which he refuted at the time.

"Adversity is going to hit, there’s goong to be tough times. So if it starts off rocky or if it starts out as a struggle I won’t be happy about it, nobody would. But I’m not going to jump ship and bail out when that happens.”

Sean Highkin/Bleacher Report

Tags: Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Bryan Colangelo Seemed To Prefer Building Around Ben Simmons Over Joel Embiid

Oct 15, 2021 2:08 PM

When Bryan Colangelo ran the Philadelphia 76ers from 2016 until 2018, multiple sources say he seemed to prefer to build around Ben Simmons over Joel Embiid.

Embiid previously enjoyed a close relationship with Sam Hinkie, who was already gone by the time the 76ers won the lottery in 2016 and selected Simmons.

The arrival of Daryl Morey resulted in a sizable shift favoring Embiid in the power dynamic. Morey almost immediately began pursuing a trade of James Harden with Simmons as the centerpiece of the offer.

Simmons didn't run away from the idea of a trade to the Houston Rockets and even began looking at real estate as it looked like Philadelphia might actually get a deal done. Simmons imagined what it would be like to have a team built around him and playing his style.

Simmons moved past the trade talks by having an All-Star season and finishing second in Defensive Player of the Year voting. Sources say Simmons' comfort in the organization had diminished, confidantes said.

Ramona Shelburne/ESPN

Tags: Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid, Philadelphia Sixers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Kyrie Irving Explains Decision, Adds He's Not Considering Retirement

Oct 14, 2021 6:49 AM

Kyrie Irving attempted to explain his decision over Instagram Live not to get vaccinated and therefore be ineligible to play in home games for the Brooklyn Nets, which led to a decision by the franchise to not let him play at all. 

"The financial consequences, I know I do not want to even do that," Irving said. "But it is reality that in order to be in New York City, in order to be on a team, I have to be vaccinated. I chose to be unvaccinated, and that was my choice, and I would ask you all to just respect that choice.

"I am going to just continue to stay in shape, be ready to play, be ready to rock out with my teammates and just be part of this whole thing. This is not a political thing; this is not about the NBA, not about any organization. This is about my life and what I am choosing to do."

Irving made it clear that he is not upset with the Nets organization, his teammates or the NBA, and he said he was not trying to make a political statement.

Irving ended his talk on Instagram Live by saying he is not going to end his career like this.

"Nobody is hijacking this voice," Irving said. "See if they play this on their TV channels and if they play this actual truth somewhere before you start talking about me and what I am doing with my life. And no, I am not retiring. And no, I am not going and leaving this game like this. There is still so much more work to do."

Ohm Youngmisuk/ESPN

Tags: Kyrie Irving, Brooklyn Nets, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

76ers Engaged With Nine Known Teams, One 'Mystery' Team On Ben Simmons Trade

Oct 13, 2021 11:40 AM

The Philadelphia 76ers remain engaged with nine known teams on a trade for Ben Simmons in addition to a 10th "mystery" team that is unclear even to members of Rich Paul.

The Cleveland Cavaliers, Detroit Pistons, Houston Rockets, Indiana Pacers, Minnesota Timberwolves, Portland Trail Blazers, San Antonio Spurs and Toronto Raptors are the nine known teams.

No team has come close to the asking price set by Daryl Morey and the 76ers as they seek a star on the level of Damian Lillard or Bradley Beal.

No conversations held by the 76ers have advanced beyond the very first stage.

The Cavalier sand Wolves have largely made pick-heavy overtures while Philadelphia has countered that they need them to bring specific All-Star caliber stars.

Jake Fischer/Bleacher Report

Tags: Ben Simmons, Philadelphia Sixers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Ben Simmons Meets With Daryl Morey, Doc Rivers

Oct 13, 2021 11:36 AM

Ben Simmons met with Daryl Morey and Doc Rivers at the Philadelphia 76ers' practice facility on Tuesday. It was the first time Simmons has communicated directly with personnel from the 76ers since his August meeting in Los Angeles.

Simmons has now also resumed responding to phone calls and text messages from 76ers' personnel in well over a month.

Morey and Rivers once again asked Simmons for his reasoning for seeking a trade elsewhere. Simmons has only directly mentioned a general interest in a new start, alluding to wanting to grow his game in a different situation.

Dating back to dialogues at the NBA Combine, Philadelphia has been adamant that they would withhold compensation from Simmons if he didn't report.

Later, at Rich Paul's home during the August meeting, Rivers even shouted, “It's in your f--king contract” to report and play for Philadelphia.

As of Wednesday, it remains undetermined if Simmons will return to game action.

Jake Fischer/Bleacher Report

Tags: Ben Simmons, Philadelphia Sixers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

76ers Currently Have No Interest In Pursuing Trade Of Ben Simmons For Kyrie Irving

Oct 12, 2021 5:29 PM

The Philadelphia 76ers have no interest in trading Ben Simmons to the Brooklyn Nets for Kyrie Irving, sources tell The Athletic.

Irving will not play for the Nets season until he either receives the COVID-19 vaccine or the mandate in New York City is lifted. The 76ers do not play their home games under the same type of mandate the Nets currently face.

Simmons' camp has not scratched the Nets as a potential trade partner.

Sam Amick/The Athletic

Tags: Kyrie Irving, Ben Simmons, Philadelphia Sixers, Brooklyn Nets, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Ben Simmons Returns To Philadelphia

Oct 11, 2021 9:38 PM

Ben Simmons has arrived in Philadelphia and took a COVID-19 test as required by the NBA protocol. 

Simmons has been holding out this preseason in hopes of a trade away from the Philadelphia 76ers. Simmons has received fines for not showing up to camp and also docked pay for games he has missed. The 76ers are hopeful to start moving toward the next steps of a return with Simmons as they want him back on the court as soon as he clears protocols. 

Simmons was previously planning to hold out until he was traded by the 76ers.

The 76ers were unaware that Simmons planned to fly to Philadelphia on Monday despite the franchise being in constant contract with Rich Paul. Simmons showed up at the arena to take his COVID-19 test before the start of Monday's game against the Brooklyn Nets. 

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

Tags: Ben Simmons, Philadelphia Sixers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Ben Simmons, 76ers Working On Resolution To Report To Team

Oct 11, 2021 11:02 AM

The Philadelphia 76ers and Rich Paul have progressed in talks on a resolution to bring Ben Simmons back to the team in the near future.

Discussions are ongoing and the plan is for the 76ers to continue to canvass the league for an acceptable trade. The 76ers, however, also want to convince Simmons to remain with the team long-term.

The chances have increased that Simmons will report to the 76ers over the past few days.

With Monday's preseason game, Simmons will move pass the $1 million mark in terms of loss pay.

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

Tags: Ben Simmons, Philadelphia Sixers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

76ers Unmoved By Indiana's Ability To Offer Malcolm Brogdon, Caris LeVert For Ben Simmons

Oct 8, 2021 1:21 PM

The Indiana Pacers have been a team with legitimate interest in trading for Ben Simmons, though they haven't frequently been mentioned in the conversation publicly. 

The Pacers have "consistently registered interest" in trading for Simmons.

The 76ers, however, have been unmoved by Indiana's package built around Malcolm Brogdon and Caris LeVert for Simmons.

The 76ers continue to seek a trade for Damian Lillard. 

Marc Stein/Substack

Tags: Caris LeVert, Malcolm Brogdon, Indiana Pacers, Philadelphia Sixers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

76ers Not Interested In Exploring Trade Of Ben Simmons For Kyrie Irving

Marc Stein/Substack

Ben Simmons Would Only Report To 76ers 'With Short-Term Intentions'

Shams Charania/The Athletic

Sixers Asked For CJ McCollum, Three Firsts Plus Swaps From Blazers For Ben Simmons

Shams Charania/Stadium

Wolves' Ownership 'Bullish' On Trading For Ben Simmons

Jon Krawczynski/The Athletic

Report: Financial Ramifications Of Holdout Taking Hold For Ben Simmons' Camp

Kyle Neubeck/Philly Voice

Pacers Trade Edmond Sumner, 2025 2nd Round Pick To Nets

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

Nets Send Sekou Doumbouya, 2024 2nd Rounder To Rockets

Shams Charania/The Athletic

Ben Simmons Unable To Recoup Money For Any Games Missed

Tim Bontemps, Bobby Marks/ESPN

Pacers Are Sleeper Team In Ben Simmons Trade Talks

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

Wolves, Pacers, Pistons, Raptors, Spurs Continue To Express Interest In Ben Simmons

Keith Pompey/Philadelphia Inquirer

76ers Place $8.25M Due To Ben Simmons In Escrow Account

Tim Bontemps, Brian Windhorst, Bobby Marks/ESPN

Ben Simmons Will Continue Holdout Despite 76ers Withholding $8.25M Payment

Shams Charania/The Athletic

76ers Won't Pay Ben Simmons $8.25M Currently Due

Jake Fischer/Bleacher Report

Ben Simmons' Camp Expects To Receive $8.25M Due Friday Either Now Or Eventually

Marc Stein/Substack

Raptors Still Hope To Trade Goran Dragic By Deadline

Josh Lewenberg/TSN

Joel Embiid Believes 76ers Have Built Roster To Accommodate Ben Simmons

Noah Levick/NBC Sports Philadelphia

Kyrie Irving, Nets Not Interested In Pursuing Trade Over Vaccine Issue

Jake Fischer/Bleacher Report

Russell Westbrook Asked Wizards For Trade To Lakers, Said 'Hell No' To Clippers Possibility

Matt Weyrich/NBC Sports

Spurs, 76ers Haven't Gotten Far With Trade Talks On Ben Simmons

Zach Lowe/ESPN

Ben Simmons Feels Pairing With Joel Embiid Has 'Run Its Course'

Sam Amick/The Athletic