76ers’ Embiid on Simmons: ‘At this point, I don’t care about that man’

When Ben Simmons returned to the 76ers last week after refusing to report to training camp due to him wanting to be traded, the thought was he was ready to show up and possibly play for Philadelphia until they could trade him.

However, as we’ve seen the past two days, it’s clear Simmons does not want to be a part of the 76ers. Yesterday, at practice, Simmons barely took part in the team huddle. Today, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, 76ers head coach Doc Rivers asked Simmons to join a defensive drill today. Simmons refused. Rivers asked again. Simmons said no again. Rivers then told Simmons he should go home, and Simmons dropped the ball and left.

Because of Simmons’ actions, the 76ers suspended him for one game due to conduct detrimental to the team. As a result, the three-time All-Star will miss the 76ers’ season opener in New Orleans against the Pelicans on Wednesday night. 

After practice, Rivers explained why he threw Simmons out of practice.

“I just thought he was a distraction today,” Rivers said. “I didn’t think he wanted to do what everybody else was doing. It was early. It wasn’t a big deal. I just told him he should leave. We went on with practice.”

Joel Embiid appears fed up with the situation.

“At this point, I don’t care about that man,” Embiid said about Simmons. “He does whatever he wants.”

However, Rivers seems willing to give Simmons another chance.

“Every day, every single moment, I’m going to give Ben a chance to join the team and be part of the team,” Rivers said. “He’s under contract to be part of the team, and that’s not going to change.”

Simmons has four years, $147 million left on his contract. 

The 76ers will wait to find the best possible deal, so Simmons could be traded now or even later, but based on today’s actions, it would be a surprise if Simmons played another game with the 76ers.

 

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