Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid are two of the most talented young players in the NBA today. Despite that, for whatever reason, the pair has not enjoyed the sort of success together that many expected they would. This has prompted inevitable trade talk, mainly focusing on Simmons.
On Friday Embiid spoke to the media and reiterated that he wanted to play alongside Simmons, and that he didn’t think a trade was necessary.
“We’ve been way closer,” Embiid said. “I want him on my team”
Embiid also noted that some of the moves made by the front office this offseason put the franchise in a good position to compete for a title.
“I think we have the roster to win a championship,” he said.
“I want to win really badly for this city. I want to play for one city the rest of my career. And that’s Philly. My son was born in Philly. I want to reward the fans for the Trust they had in the Process”
Simmons, for his part, has also heard all the chatter about how he and Embiid lack championship-caliber chemistry. On Friday, he joked that the pair would address that by moving in together.
“I’m moving in with Jo this month to get close with him and learn his game and know him off the court,” he deadpanned.
Simmons then struck a more serious note.
“We hang out,” he continued. “Everyone’s life is different but I think we’re only going to grow and get better with time. Everyone has their personal things that they do … but Jo and I are great. I think over time our relationship continues to grow; we keep gelling over time and getting to know each other off the floor also. … I think this year is going to be great for us.”
Extreme honesty from Paige Spiranac. https://t.co/Nt7oqZbhdN
— Game 7 (@game7__) December 4, 2020
Aside from chemistry issues with Embiid, the other big issue that has followed Simmons around for the last few years has been his three-point shooting. He addressed that on Friday as well.
“It’s important to make shots but it’s more important to win,” he said.
“However the winning happens, it happens. I know (head coach Doc Rivers) and (assistant coach Sam Cassell) are going to put me in the right positions to do that and be dominant so I’m just looking forward to getting out there and seeing what they have to offer in terms of my situation on the floor and where I’m going to be.”
Yikes Scottie. https://t.co/OfGjnOyWpP
— Game 7 (@game7__) December 3, 2020
This is going to be a big year for the Sixers. Currently, most odds makers have them sitting behind the Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers, Milwaukee Bucks, Brooklyn Nets, Boston Celtics, Miami Heat, Toronto Raptors, Dallas Mavericks and Denver Nuggets when it comes to 2020-21 title odds.
Part of that is a byproduct of past failures.
Will Philly be able to shock the world this year?
Time will tell.