Ben Simmons feels Sixers are trying to force him to play

What’s the buzz on Twitter?

Sam Quinn @SamQuinnCBS
I’m really uncomfortable with every element of the Ben Simmons situation and I’m really scared of the impact this is going to have on how the league treats mental health issues moving forward. That’s all I really have to say on the matter. – 8:09 PM
Sean Highkin @highkin
The next update I want to hear about Ben Simmons is when he actually gets traded. I’m over the competing leaks about the validity of his mental health issues. – 8:04 PM
Shams Charania @ShamsCharania
Ben Simmons believes the 76ers’ tactics are worsening his mental health instead of supporting him, and want to deem him mentally fit in order to force him to play.
Quotes from his agent, Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul, and response from team officials:…7:58 PM
Alex Kennedy @AlexKennedyNBA
Gilbert Arenas got fired up when asked about Shaquille O’Neal and Charles Barkley calling Ben Simmons a “prima donna.”
Arenas defended Simmons and called out Shaq and Barkley for being prima donnas back when they played.
Here is Arenas’ full quote from @etanthomas36’s podcast: PM

Keith Pompey @PompeyOnSixers
Ben Simmons made an appearance at the #Sixers’ latest film session at Wells Fargo Center… via @phillyinquirer – 7:15 PM
Tom Moore @TomMoorePhilly
#Sixers coach Doc Rivers: Ben Simmons was in the back during film session today but not on the floor during shootaround. Says he’s focused on the guys who can play. Doesn’t know if Simmons will be on upcoming 6-game road trip and isn’t thinking about it. – 5:25 PM
Ky Carlin @Ky_Carlin
Rivers stated that Ben Simmons was with the team this morning at a film session. He added that he was in the back of the room for the film session. #Sixers5:22 PM
Brian Robb @BrianTRobb
Brad Stevens had an entertaining response with @Toucherandrich when asked about hearing a Ben Simmons trade report involving Jaylen Brown…12:01 PM
Keith Pompey @PompeyOnSixers
Why any Ben Simmons trade offer including Jaylen Brown is a nonstarter for the #Celtics… via @phillyinquirer – 10:25 AM
Keith Pompey @PompeyOnSixers
Why any Ben Simmons trade offer including Jaylen Brown is a nonstarter for the Celtics… via @phillyinquirer – 5:29 AM

More on this storyline

“I truly believe the fines, the targeting, the negative publicity shined on the issue — that’s very unnecessary and has furthered the mental health issues for Ben,” Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul said. “Either you help Ben, or come out and say he’s lying. Which one is it?” A 76ers team official told The Athletic on Thursday it is “absolutely not” the case that they are forcing his return or accusing him of lying. The team’s position is that he should partake in all team activities until there is information from its mental health professional or Simmons that would preclude him from playing. -via The Athletic / November 11, 2021
The 76ers say they have been fully supportive of Simmons’ process and have worked to provide him with all possible resources. As it stands, short of a doctor’s evaluation declaring he can’t play, the team expects Simmons to ramp up to return. The team sent Simmons a schedule for Thursday that included the team’s game against Toronto, which Simmons believes is an effort to withhold his game check if he does not appear at Wells Fargo Center. A fine has followed each time the 76ers have done this in the past. Simmons, who requested a trade out of Philadelphia in June, showed up to the arena on Thursday afternoon for a team meeting but did not participate in the team walkthrough or the game versus the Raptors. -via The Athletic / November 11, 2021
Simmons, 25, has had no timetable to return to game action, but he has made it clear to team officials that he wants to be back on the floor when ready. Simmons has been participating in individual workouts, day-to-day body treatments, team shootarounds and meetings. “In this case, we have to get Ben help and not put finances above mental health,” Paul said. “As an agent, I understand contractual obligations and I hold myself accountable in this business. But if someone is telling you something, we can no longer turn a blind eye in today’s world. -via The Athletic / November 11, 2021

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