Philadelphia 76ers Rumors: Rich Paul wants Tyrese Maxey out of Philly

Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports /

And just when you thought the Philadelphia 76ers‘ point guard situation couldn’t get any worse, the plot has unfortunately thickened.

On the final day of August, a day explicitly reserved by the NFL for the final preseason trim down to a 53 man roster, news broke that the unthinkable had happened: Ben Simmons had demanded a trade away from the Sixers.

While this should have been an expected outcome for anyone who watched how the situation had been unfolding over the past few weeks, it still sent minor tremors through the City of Brotherly Love because of the pressure it puts on the team to get a deal done before training camp opens up roughly one month from now.

Could the Sixers come away with a quality collection of players, picks, and assets? Most definitely, the finality of (all but) having to trade Simmons in the next month could breed a fruitful bidding war that results in a final price notably higher than the one Indiana initially offered up a few short months ago, but unless either Bradley Beal, Damian Lillard, or De’Aaron Fox explicitly demands a trade of their own between then and now, it’s hard to imagine a star-caliber player heading back to Philly in any sort of one-for-one deal.

If that was the only bit of Sixers news to drop today, it would have surely hit like 10 pounds of unfortunate in a five-pound sack, but apparently, the basketball gods weren’t done raining down haymakers on the City of Brotherly Love. No, little did we know that another bombshell was about to drop surrounding the Philadelphia 76ers’ other young, ascending point guard.

Apparently, Rich Paul really has it out for the Philadelphia 76ers.

Mere hours after the initial Ben Simmons news broke, Jason Dumas of Bleacher Report and Kron 4 News reported that Rich Paul would also like to get Tyrese Maxey away from the Philadelphia 76ers, going so far a to pull him from “community events” with Philadelphia based organizations.

Whoa, whoa, whoa, hold up; there’s no way that can be true. Maybe something was lost in translation or is being taken out of context. Let’s read the exact quote from Mr. Dumas and see it sans any sort of spin.

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Paul doesn’t want Maxey to “grow roots in Philly if he could be gone,” you say? My goodness, that might actually be worse than I initially let on.

Now, putting aside the obvious moral failing of canceling community events in a global pandemic, especially if said community events were of a charitable nature, relaying this information in such a public way that a reporter was able to blast it out into the ether has to be one of the worst decisions I’ve ever seen an agent make.

It immediately draws Maxey’s character into question – rightfully or not – and places a heaping helping of unnecessary pressure on the shoulders of a 20-year-old old kid who is universally beloved by his fanbase.

The next time Maxey is given media availability, the first questions surely won’t be about his offseason workout regiment, his Summer League mastery, or his skills camp back home in Texas. No, he’ll instead be asked why he would cancel community events, how he feels about the organization, and if he too will demand a trade in the not too distant future… that is, if said questions aren’t coming from another team’s beat reporters in Toronto, Minnesota, or even San Francisco.

Sidebar: Paul’s very assertion that Maxey and Simmons need to be traded together doesn’t even make that much sense because the duo aren’t particularly good on-court fits playing alongside each other. I get the sentiment, but in practice, even the request is weird.

Next. Ben Simmons has turned the trade talk tables. dark

Ultimately, maybe Daryl Morey overplayed his hand. Maybe his “King’s ransom” demands were overly ambitious, and his decision to dangle an All-Star player out as trade bait only works if said player doesn’t flex his own muscles back and take what little bit of power he has in the situation into his own hands. While it’s hard to fault Ben Simmons for wanting out and being offended by how this process has played out, Rich Paul’s alleged decision to rope Tyrese Maxey into this predicament feels incredibly unnecessary. If anything, Maxey looks to be the person who could gain most by Simmons leaving town, making such a hardball tactic all the more confusing.