It seems like everybody has to have an opinion on the saga going on between Ben Simmons and the Philadelphia 76ers. There has been a lot of back and forth between the 25-year old 3-time All-Star and the organization since his official trade request late in August.
Even before that, there has been a lot of drama surrounding Simmons. Ever since his poor playoff performance where he shot only 34.2% from the free-throw line while also passing up a dunk late in the Game 7 loss to the Atlanta Hawks, everybody has had a say in his play and his situation.
After the Game 7 loss, things got testy as coach Doc Rivers said he was unsure if Simmons could be a championship point guard and star teammate Joel Embiid discussed Simmons passing up the dunk openly to the media. It is not normal for guys to discuss specific things like that with the media and NBA Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas has an issue with that.
Thomas hopped on “The Big Podcast” from the NBA on TNT and blamed the Sixers a bit for dogging Simmons. He compared it to Los Angeles Lakers star Shaquille O’Neal struggling mightily from the foul line:
Oh, they dogged him. Well, here’s what happened. Yeah, he had a bad moment. He has some bad moments in the playoffs, right? What your team, your coach, and your organization is supposed to do in your bad moments, they are supposed to protect you. They ain’t supposed to air your dirty laundry out. Your teammates ain’t supposed to be like, ‘Oh man, he didn’t’ nah, nah, nah, nah, nah, nah, nah. They’re supposed to protect you. Now the fans and everybody else, when Shaq was going 4-for-18 from the foul line, I didn’t hear Phil Jackson dogging Shaq. I didn’t hear the inside that Lakers organization. Now, they may have been saying ‘Hey, big fella, we need to work on the free throws’, but they weren’t publicly dissing him.
Isiah Thomas on Ben Simmons:
“They dogged him… when Shaq was going like 4-18 at the foul line, I didn’t hear Phil Jackson dogging Shaq… they wasn’t publicly dissing him.”
— ProCity Hoops (@ProCityHoops) November 12, 2021
The Sixers will continue to have to figure out what to do with the Simmons situation, but at this point, both sides have to really work with each other. Philadelphia needs to have patience with him and Simmons needs to be cooperative with the organization in order to help facilitate a trade for him.
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Source: Yahoo Sports