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#pounditSaturday, December 4, 2021

Ben Simmons out indefinitely after telling 76ers he has back injury

Ben Simmons handling a basketball

Ben Simmons is no longer suspended by the Philadelphia 76ers after he sat out Wednesday night’s season opener, but he may be sidelined for a while longer. Why? Apparently the star point guard is now dealing with a back injury.

Simmons informed the Sixers on Thursday that he has experienced tightness in his back, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports. He was treated by the team’s medical staff and cleared to take part in an individual workout, but he chose not to.

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Simmons is “not mentally ready to play” and will be out for an indefinite amount of time.

Simmons could actually be hurt, but we all know what’s likely going on here.

At this point, it is hard to imagine Simmons ever playing for the Sixers again. He was kicked out of practice by head coach Doc Rivers on Tuesday. The team then announced that he had been suspended one game. That all came after Simmons was seen dribbling off on his own rather than taking part in a team huddle the day before (video here).

Joel Embiid had some harsh comments about Simmons following the suspension, and the star center is likely speaking for most, if not all, of his teammates. Simmons doesn’t want to play for the 76ers, and they don’t want him there. The challenge now is finding a way to trade him for anything close to fair value amid the difficult circumstances.

Photo: Dec 27, 2019; Orlando, Florida, USA; Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons (25) drives to the basket against the Orlando Magic during the second half at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

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