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Report: Before he threatened holdout, 76ers wanted to keep Ben Simmons into season

NBC Sports


Article Summary:

Ben Simmons told the 76ers he wanted to be traded and wouldn’t report to training camp.

Philadelphia’s brass – owner Josh Harris, president Daryl Morey, general manager Elton Brand and coach Doc Rivers – planned to deliver a very-different message during their meeting with Simmons last month. After evaluating the market then planning to keep Simmons into next season, reversing course and completing a trade would be a major swing.

How did the 76ers think they’d avoid this mess?

After Morey said he wouldn’t trade Simmons then offered Simmons to the Rockets for James Harden? After Rivers said he didn’t know whether Simmons could be the point guard on a championship team? After Joel Embiid threw Simmons under the bus following Philadelphia’s second-round loss to the Hawks? After Simmons’ agent, Rich Paul, broached a trade when meeting with the team shortly after last season? After the 76ers have been trying to trade Simmons all offseason? After Simmons cut off communication?

Maybe some less-sensitive players could handle all that then return, either temporarily or for the long haul.

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