Ben Simmons talks Philadelphia for the first time this offseason in leaked keynote videos
Ben Simmons hasn’t spoken much this offseason. After a disappointing end to the 2020-21 season for Simmons and the 76ers, polarized by a missed opportunity to dunk the basketball with roughly three minutes and thirty seconds left in Game 7 against the Atlanta Hawks, the majority of the city of Philadelphia turned their backs on the 76ers’ 25 year old point guard.
Throughout the summer, we have been fed rumors regarding Ben Simmons, his relationship with his teammates, his head coach, and Philadelphia in general. Everyone knows all of the headlines by now, but here’s a quick rundown to catch you up:
- Responding to Instagram comments.
- Joking about “pool time” on video at the gym while the media mocks him.
- Rumors of a damaged relationship with Doc Rivers that’s beyond repair.
- Rumors that he will hold out of training camp if not traded.
- Ben Simmons hasn’t spoken to Doc Rivers, Daryl Morey, Joel Embiid since the end of the season.
- Videos of him shooting three pointers with Rajon Rondo.
- Trade Rumors with Minnesota, Golden State, Sacramento and San Antonio.
- 76ers holding out for a Damian Lillard, Ben Simmons trade.
- Simmons rumors saying he expects to be traded.
The month of September is upon us and Ben Simmons is still listed as the starting point guard for the 76ers entering this season. Trade rumors are still flowing, with the most recent being a package that would send Ben Simmons to the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for D’Angelo Russell, Malik Beasley, and Jaden McDaniels. Obviously that trade rumor is terrible so we’ll just continue with this post and talk about that later.
Throughout all of the chaos, what we have not heard from, is Ben Simmons himself. That is, until what appears to be leaked videos surfaced last week from Ben Simmons speaking during a virtual Forbes Sports and Business Keynote presented by Rocket Mortgage. In the videos, titled a “Fireside Chat” with Simmons, he talks about nothing of importance from his California Home.
Obviously, we have no idea what else was said during the speech. Simmons has done this more than a few times virtually throughout last season when doing wine tastings for Penfolds. There’s no reason to think that anything on topic of his currently professional relationship with the 76ers would be discussed.
Video One: Ben Simmons’ Top Spot in Philadelphia:
“Sightseeing for me would be Rocky Steps. Even though it’s a very touristy thing to do, it’s still incredible to really see the steps and the size and how big the place is once you get there. It is a little different from seeing in pictures.”
Of course, immediately social media jumped on Ben Simmons for calling the Art Museum steps the “Rocky Steps” which is understandable. Any time anyone speaks about Philadelphia and gets something wrong, they immediately jump on that person, no matter who it is. However, if you’re delivering a Key Note speech, calling the steps the Rocky Steps probably makes more sense to people outside the city of Philadelphia, so I’m not going to kill Ben for doing so, especially when it doesn’t appear that these videos were ever supposed to be released.
Video Two: Ben Simmons’ Favorite Places to Visit
“Melbourne, Australia, I’m going to put Philadelphia in there because I’ve lived there for so many years, I might throw in Louisiana. It’s very random, but I have a history there and maybe Los Angeles.”
Video two is somewhat interesting just because of the way Ben Simmons phrased his reasoning on why he put Philadelphia as number two on his top tourist destinations. He almost sounded reluctant in adding Philadelphia to the list and only did so because “he has lived there for so many years.” Again, nothing really telling from this video either. Melbourne, Philly, LSU. Seems like a pretty standard answer from a very dumb question by the woman speaking.
Official ruling on these videos: There’s nothing to see here. Everyone keep it moving.
Let’s go back to watching the infamous Ben Simmons offseason shooting videos and pray to god all of the rumors surrounding him are just that and he will be back with the 76ers at the start of training camp in a few weeks. Ben Simmons isn’t an idiot. He knows that he has to shoot the basketball to get back in good graces with his coaches, teammates, and the city of Philadelphia.
What we don’t know, is if he is mentally strong enough to actually shoot the basketball in a game, regardless of the criticism that comes with it. The solution is simple:
- Rejoin the team at the start of camp
- Tell the media you’re back and focused on winning
- Talk to your teammates and coaches
- Shoot the basketball
If Ben Simmons does just that, come mid-October, Ben Simmons and the 76ers will. be just fine.
UPDATE: This no longer looks to be the case with Ben Simmons reportedly forcing a trade from the 76ers and is willing to sit out training camp.