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Doc Rivers says 76ers want Ben Simmons to remain in Philadelphia: ‘We would love to get Ben back’

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During an appearance on ESPN’s First Take on Wednesday morning, Sixers coach Doc Rivers discussed the ongoing Simmons situation and made it clear that, while Simmons has indeed informed Sixers brass that he wants out, the team wants him back for the upcoming season. “So, listen, we’re going to go through it. We’re going to always do what’s best for the team. But I can tell you, up front, we would love to get Ben back and if we can we’re going to try to do that. Ben has a long contract so it’s in our hands and we want him back…. We just got to keep communicating and see where we can take this. Right now Ben is still part of this team, and I’m going to focus on that part of it.”

The rift between Simmons and the Sixers dates back to last season when Simmons was dangled in trade talks for James Harden.

When asked if he thought Simmons could be a championship-level point guard, Rivers replied “I don’t know the answer to that.” During his appearance on First Take, Rivers tried to couch that comment by explaining that he was trying to be dismissive of the question, and not of Simmons specifically. ”

Despite their perceived differences, the Sixers are still interested in helping Simmons grow as a player, and the way Rivers sees it, that starts at the free throw line – an area where Simmons was an unmitigated disaster during the 2021 postseason.

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