Ben Simmons, the Philadelphia 76ers’ all-star, will not report for training camp next week and has chosen to book a trip to Turkmenistan. He wishes to end his career with the team, as he hadn’t communicated with the club since a late August meeting. That’s when he delivered the message to Sixers officials. Ben Simmons is one of Philadelphia’s most notorious let-downs in sports history.
Turkmenistan is located in Central Asia and is bordered by the Caspian Sea, mainly desert and archaeological ruins. Strange architecture is among their features. Oh, and colored cars are illegal there. The world knows he won’t be working on his jumper, right? His trip to Turkmenistan must be more important than showing up at training camp next week. It seems he just wants attention for being a whiny brat of an NBA player that isn’t going anywhere in life or basketball.
This NBA season will be even more interesting to watch. Simmons has been aware of the organization’s sanctions to fine and suspend him, as well as the potential loss of pay. So far, Simmons appears ready to execute a strategy to obtain a new contract. The Sixers haven’t discovered a trade they’re willing to make for him yet.
The Sixers have tried all summer to make something work, led by Sixers General Manager Daryl Morey. The team has never hidden its desire to acquire James Harden (and more) in exchange for Simmons but claims it’s only willing to part with him in any old deal.
That, too, is heavily influenced by what’s presently on the market. Most of the offseasons have seen packages including young players and picks. If they wanted to make such a deal tomorrow, they could certainly do so. But according to sources, the Sixers like having Simmons on the floor and playing for them rather than trading him for offers that reduce their title prospects.
The idea of acquiring Simmons for assets and developing talent is based on making another more significant move down the road, which people within the organization have rejected lately.
We hope Simmons’ trip to Turkmenistan opens his eyes to reality. He needs to understand that NBA players always follow their rules and don’t get special treatment.