Though it doesn’t look good right now, the Sixers continue to insist that their preferred outcome at this point is to bring Simmons back and try to work through this. Embiid has publicly stumped for Simmons and privately insisted they can turn this around if they simply get him back in the gym and around the team. Rivers does not believe this will be an issue in the locker room, using an example from his own playing days to show these situations can be rectified.
Source: Philly Voice
What’s the buzz on Twitter?
Kyle Neubeck @KyleNeubeck
Thinking about one of the many forgotten subplots of the burner account saga: Embiid getting repeatedly disparaged to prop up Simmons (who was drafted by Colangelo) pic.twitter.com/b7ob5Ryddd – 9:31 PM
Derek Bodner @DerekBodnerNBA
Simmons news is mostly maintaining status quo. Still, it just reinforces how the only real reason the franchise is relevant is because of Joel Embiid. All the decisions, from ownership to management, to players not developing, threaten to waste Embiid’s prime, an unforgivable sin – 12:21 PM
Derek Bodner @DerekBodnerNBA
You don’t trade *for* Wall at this stage of his career, you use him to match salary so you can get a slew of picks, which you would eventually package for the running mate you actually want for Embiid.
But we’ve already seen that Stone doesn’t value Simmons enough for that IMO. – 11:58 AM
More on this storyline
The Simmons-Rivers relationship has been one of many issues in question as this has played out over the summer. Sources with knowledge of the situation have noted throughout the offseason that mending that relationship would be one of the most important steps toward potentially making this work, even if temporarily, and there has been little-to-no progress on that front. Simmons’ buy-in has been described as “low” or “non-existent” by team sources in recent weeks, with the head coach and player rarely speaking since the season ended in late June. -via Philly Voice / September 23, 2021
It almost goes without saying that bridge-building would need to be done between Simmons and Doc Rivers. The head coach tried to walk back the despair he showed after Game 7 during exit interviews the very next day, and his defenses of Simmons far outnumber his one high-profile shoulder shrug. Even still, getting the two to connect during the offseason has been close to impossible, sources say. Ultimately, this is in Simmons’ hands. Rivers would tell you himself that he regrets letting his guard down during Simmons’ lowest moment as a professional. Some missteps are just harder to come back from than others. -via Philly Voice / September 22, 2021
Kyle Neubeck: One detail I left out from this was the suggestion from a team source that firing Rich Paul (however unlikely) would be one way for Ben to try to rectify what some view as a self-created problem. “He could just say, ‘my agent talked me into this stupid fucking strategy.’” -via Twitter @KyleNeubeck / September 22, 2021