The Philadelphia 76ers and 25-year old 3-time All-Star Ben Simmons are at a standoff at this point in time. The Sixers have been looking for trade partners for him and looking to find the right value for him while Simmons has promised not to show up to camp nor play in another game for the team.
As training camp gets set to begin on Tuesday in Camden, NJ, the Sixers were hoping to change Simmons’ mind and bring him back to the team at least in the beginning. Coach Doc Rivers was hoping to persuade him to come back, but it looks like that will not happen as Simmons is steadfast in his threat to not report to the team.
Even Simmons’ teammates tried to head out to Los Angeles and convince him, but he denied their efforts. Per Shams Charania of The Athletic and The Stadium:
The core leaders on the 76ers — such as Joel Embiid, Tobias Harris and Matisse Thybulle — and most of the team were set to take a jet to see Simmons before being turned away, sources said. Multiple sources said Simmons didn’t want his teammates, some of whom he considers friends, to make the Philadelphia-to-Los Angeles commute out of courtesy because he won’t change his mind on wanting a trade.
The 76ers’ training camp begins this upcoming week, with Media Day on Monday.
Simmons has mentally checked out as a member of the 76ers, sources said, meaning whether or not he ever appears in Philadelphia this season the organization may never again receive the same dedicated player.
It is disappointing that this situation has come down to this. Philadelphia and Simmons have always had a rocky marriage, but it was clear that the 25-year old is one of the best players in the game. It will be interesting to see what happens next in this ongoing saga.
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Source: Yahoo Sports