Ben Simmons Update Gives Concerning Look At Return To 76ers

Ben Simmons, Philadelphia 76ers, NBA Trade Rumors
NBA Analysis Network

NBA All-Star Ben Simmons made a surprising return to the Philadelphia 76ers earlier this week. While there was communication starting up between the two sides, Simmons arrived earlier than the team thought he would.

Simmons reported to the Wells Fargo Center before tip-off against the Brooklyn Nets on Monday night.

That began the process of him officially reporting to the team, as he had to wait a few days before being able to join the group because of the NBA’s health and safety protocols.

This is a step in the right direction for Simmons and the 76ers, as things got uglier and uglier as the offseason went on. He no-showed training camp, leading to the team withholding his salary and fining him for each thing that he missed.

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While it is encouraging that Simmons has returned to the team, the early results aren’t great. He has only been allowed to work out individually and can’t meet in large groups, but he has been lackluster thus far.

“While waiting for Simmons to clear protocols and rejoin the team in earnest, the Sixers have only been able to put him through individual workouts and conduct meetings away from the larger group. And the early returns have not been especially encouraging — one source described Simmons as “going through the motions,” though it was noted that things have improved each day over the few days he has been here.”

That performance in workouts should not come as a surprise. This is the M.O. of any Rich Paul client that isn’t getting what they want from the team they are. We have seen it with Anthony Davis most recently, as he played hardball with the New Orleans Pelicans before being traded to the Los Angeles Lakers.

It doesn’t surprise the 76ers, but if things don’t change, they may have to adjust their stance on the trade front.

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“But if the trend continues and Simmons’ dissatisfaction takes center stage on the floor in a Sixers uniform, there will be debate about how it impacts the team and whether it puts pressure on them to get a deal done sooner rather than later.”

Ben Simmons has remained on the trade block for months, but the team has not found a package that they like. Their asking price has been sky-high, and until that changes, he will likely remain on the Philadelphia 76ers roster.