Ben Simmons Practice Day 2: More Questions than Answers
Today marked practice number two with Ben Simmons returning to the 76ers. Simmons will not speak with the media today, which means on tomorrow will finally be the day that we hear from him. Scrolling through Twitter for some updates, here’s what we have to work with. Honestly, everything that I wrote about this morning seems to be a somewhat accurate portrayal of what’s been happening at practice. None of which, is good.
The media and beat writers are watching his every move. Does NBC Sports Philly have a personal “Ben Cam”? I don’t know but that video just shows you that Simmons is under a microscope and rightfully so. We’ll start with the huddle at the end of practice. Tom Moore shared a video of the Sixers wrapping up the day.
Of course, everything is immediately trying to find out where Ben Simmons is in the huddle. It appears that he’s in the back, bouncing a ball, and then eventually shoots a hook shot at the end of the video as the huddle breaks and walks off the court.
Another Sixers beat reporter, Jamie Apody, tweeted out the following:
Doc Rivers apparently told her that chemistry with his teammates is getting better by the day, however, Ben Simmons did not really join in on the team huddle when practice broke and immediately exited the court while other teammates stayed around and got up shots.
In Jamie Apody’s video, you can clearly see that this dude is NOT in the huddle.
Can someone help this dude? Someone needs to tell him everyone is watching his every move. They are constantly monitoring him. At the very least, act like you’re engaged. Get your hand in the huddle. Wipe the “I don’t want to be here” look off your face and get involved, Ben. Enough already.
Rivers apparently answered a question about this and said that Ben Simmons’ interaction with teammates “will grow.” He also added that Simmons played more today, but he still has “no idea” if he will be playing on Wednesday. At this point, if the 76ers coaching staff has “no idea” if Simmons will play on Wednesday, then I’m going to have to move forward and say that he will not suit up when the Sixers open up the season against the Pelicans in New Orleans. We are literally two days away from the start of the season and no one knows if Simmons is going to play? Hardly a boost of confidence about anything to do with this entire situation.
Also – how can no beat reporter ask a follow up question like “Hey Doc, how do you not know if Ben Simmons is going to play in two days when the season starts? We want answers.” Is that too much to ask? I don’t think so.
Georges Niang spoke with the media and said it was “good” to practice with Ben Simmons the last two days and that the “vibes were really high.”
Danny Green spoke, which you have to think is related to Ben Simmons, when saying that the first group “has to rebound better” if there is a smaller group on the court. You would think that means that the 76ers 6’10’’ point guard will not be in the lineup. He also added that it’s different to see a new face with Ben Simmons’ arrival but that nothing has specifically changed and it’s not awkward.
Assuming Simmons is not playing, Tyrese Maxey would take over starting point guard duties for the Sixers. Doc Rivers spoke on who the backup point guards would be if that is the case. Remember, Shake Milton is out with an injury, so besides Tyrese Maxey, the Sixers will have to turn to either Furkan Korkmaz or Isaiah Joe as backup point guards. (kill me).
All of this is a whole bunch of nothing. We really won’t know anything until we see Ben Simmons speak with the media, and then in a game time situation. Once that happens, we will be able to see clear as day what version of Simmons has returned to camp.
The pictures and videos seem to show a Ben Simmons that isn’t engaged. But like a said this morning, it’s still such a small sample size and us outsiders really have no idea what’s going on.
The concerning part, is that the 76ers don’t seem to know either.
Mandatory Credit: Getty Images