The Philadelphia 76ers and Ben Simmons have been engaged in a tense cold war since last season.
He wants out and refuses to play until a trade occurs. The Sixers want to move him, but only for the right price.
The tense back-and-forth between player and organization, often playing out through the media, has led to some ugly stories emerging. Everything from Simmons allegedly mistreating staff to his purported money woes.
This week, another negative Simmons story came out.
According to NBA insider Keith Pompey, Simmons may also be one of only two 76ers players who remains unvaccinated.
“As of about a month ago, all but two 76ers were vaccinated,” he said on the Locked On Sixers podcast. “One is a guy who’s at the end of the bench who rarely plays, and the other one was Ben Simmons.”
This is a particularly big deal because one of Simmons’ teammates, Tobias Harris, had an especially nasty encounter with COVID-19.
“That Tobias situation was scary,” Pompey continued. “There were people on social media that were extremely critical of him in that Boston Celtics game and then you hear after the game they checked his temperature later on and it’s 104. I spoke to several people and they thought he still had COVID…
“He’s having an upper respiratory infection, he’s also having sinus problems, he had a really bad fever… You know after they practice the guys put up shot, well Tobias had to take several breaks because he was so out of breath just from taking shots.”
Simmons has one team he would prefer to be traded to, but it is unlikely Philly will honor that request. The front office will make whatever it deems to be the best deal, regardless of how its disgruntled young superstar feels about it.
Impressive stuff. https://t.co/p5mNh0dB7Y
— Game 7 (@game7__) December 12, 2021
A Simmons trade feels inevitable at this point. It’s a matter of when, not if.
Charles Kruger has been credentialed to cover two Super Bowls, four NBA Finals, and one World Series. A 20-year veteran in the sports world, he has sources spanning the NBA, MLB, NFL, UFC and NASCAR. Currently residing in Los Angeles, Calif., he is Game 7’s go-to source for rumors surrounding the Lakers, Clippers and Dodgers.