Return of the Prodigal Son? 76ers Welcome Back Ben Simmons as They Prepare for Season Opener vs Pelicans

Published 10/18/2021, 12:55 AM EDT
May 29, 2021; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) celebrates with 76ers guard Ben Simmons (25) against the Washington Wizards in the third quarter during game three in the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


Ben Simmons has come full circle in the last quarter-year. From being the leading Philly figure to becoming the most hated player and now again back to staying in Philadelphia, it has been a 360 degrees turnaround. It’s as if Ben and his fans are yin and yang of some sort, often contradictory and yet interconnected.

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The Sixers went 2-2 in the preseason and they certainly missed the presence of their lost All-Star. Now, with a sureshot comeback of Ben, the Philly franchise seems to have forgotten the recent past.

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Ben Simmons is in Philly and things are back to normal

After a green signal from the league’s safety protocols, Ben Simmons finally joined his team. He practiced alongside the full roster on Sunday i.e. October 17th, marking his comeback. Although the 25-YO did not obviously interact with the media, his return overall left a positive vibe coming from Elton Brand’s organization.

About Ben’s first official game in the 2021-22 season, coach Doc Rivers did not reveal anything. The 60-YO, instead, explained that he’s keeping an eye on the conditioning of the star point guard. Morever, he also revealed how they were able to cut down the tension by using humor to re-introduce Ben to his team.

So it is highly unlikely that he’ll play on October 20th against the Pelicans, but maybe he gets to play a few minutes against the Nets on October 22nd. It will be interesting to see how the Wells Fargo Center reacts to #25 jersey when he steps on the court.

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Philadelphia Sixers players react to the All-Star’s return

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Earlier, former Sixers legend Allen Iverson had sent out a message to Ben. And now, the media is keen on finding out how his teammates felt when the 3x All-Star came back after months of bitterness. 

While Furkan Korkmaz shared how he was extremely happy to have Ben back, Tobias also had something to add. The 29-YO expressed in an interview, “I’m not about to tell this man’s conversation… I didn’t start as asking, hey bro, why’d you come back?” and hinted that things were just fine.

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Well, the Sixers were considering them title contenders even with no Ben Simmons on the squad. So his arrival will definitely help Joel Embiid and men with greater strength on both ends of the court. Stay tuned for more latest updates.

Watch this story: Ben Simmons and Other Stars Who Must Prove Themselves in This Season

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Sourabh Singh

1739 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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