“Philly Is a Tough Place”: Doc Rivers Takes Subtle Dig at Ben Simmons in First Words on Trade Controversy

Published 09/27/2021, 12:33 PM EDT
May 26, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons (25) reacts after dunking the ball against the Washington Wizards during the first quarter of game two in the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports


The saga of Ben Simmons has turned into a full-blown debacle with the point guard expressing his desire to leave. Despite Doc Rivers wanting him to stay, the point guard has had enough with the franchise. Moreover, his relationship with the fans is at an all-time low, with most of them turning their back on him. The 76ers head coach in the meantime spoke about how it would be tough for him to stay with the team, with the fans wanting the player to leave the franchise.

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CHICAGO, USA – FEBRUARY 22: Ben Simmons (25) of Philadelphia 76ers in action during the NBA basketball match between Chicago Bulls and Philadelphia 76ers at the United Center in Chicago, Illinois, United States on February 22, 2018. (Photo by Bilgin S. Sasmaz/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

Doc Rivers opens the lid on Ben Simmons

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The superstar who arrived back in 2016 quickly gained plaudits for his presence in the guard position. Although fans waited for him to blossom into the player they expected, his route to becoming a franchise player remained shaky. However, his performance against the Atlanta Hawks in Game 7 last season was the final nail in his coffin.

His passing up an opportunity to get a layup against the Hawks clearly angered Philly fans and his teammates alike. Thus began  Simmon’s downfall. Following this, he promptly requested a trade out of the franchise.

Meanwhile, Doc Rivers spoke about how tough it would be to keep Simmons. Sports Anchor, John Clark posted a tweet stating Doc Rivers will find it hard to keep Simmons.

“Doc Rivers says Philly is a tough place to play when asked about possible reasons Ben Simmons wants to be traded.”

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Simmons wants to leave as soon as possible

According to Athletic’s Shams Charania, Joel Embiid, Tobias Harris, and Matisse Thybulle made a last-ditch effort to keep the player. However, things haven’t gotten any better.

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“Multiple sources said Simmons didn’t want his teammates, some of whom he considers friends, to make the Philadelphia-to-Los Angeles commute out of courtesy because he won’t change his mind on wanting a trade,” mentioned the report.

NEW YORK, USA – JANUARY 20 : Ben Simmons (25) of Philadelphia 76ers is seen during NBA match between Philadelphia 76ers and Brooklyn Nets held on January 20, 2020 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

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Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN mentioned how Simmons is prepared to face fines and suspensions as well. Simmons wants to leave the franchise as soon as possible. Recent times have been difficult for the player, who undoubtedly has immense potential.

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Thus, the chances of Simmons staying on with the franchise seem bleak. It would be wise for both the franchise and the player to part mutually.

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Jacob Gijy

507 articles

Jacob Gijy is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. Gijy finished his Masters in Counselling Psychology and worked in a hospital for 2 years before his passion for sports compelled him to find his way to sports journalism. A fan of the great Tim Duncan, he is always ready to pick up a debate with anyone who does not offer the centre the respect he deserves.

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