The saga of Ben Simmons and the Sixers continued Thursday night as Ben Simmons agent, Rich Paul, gave an interview to The Athletic regarding the current situation between the former Rookie-of-the-Year and the Sixers. And its the latest act of desperation from Klutch Sports to get a handle on a situation that they have bundled.
The interview was spurred on by Ben Simmons being fined (again) after he refused to work with the Sixers team psychologists. When the paychecks stopped, Ben Simmons started working with the Sixers team doctors. He reportedly met with them Monday, but so far the Sixers have failed to receive any information that would preclude him from playing or practicing. So Rich Paul thought it would be a good idea to try and make Simmons a sympathetic figure…
“Hes not there yet. How can a doctor, who has only met with Ben once, say, ‘Ben is mentally ready to play?’ So do we keep digging on him, or help him?”
Paul told Shams Charania that the Sixers organization is “bullying” Ben into coming back. And that everything that has happened like the fines, and the publicity of the matter, has made it worse. Not Klutch sports. Not the hold out. Not the refusal to meet with his teammates. Its all the Sixers fault.
This is just the latest example of a completely botched situation by Klutch sports, and a desperation attempt to try and gain public support. An attempt to make the Sixers organization out to be MONSTERS for asking Ben Simmons to simply provide them with a time frame of when he can get back on the court.
Rich Paul shouldve sat this one out. Some of what Paul said in his long winded desperation plea is true. There are skeptics out there that dont believe that Ben Simmons is dealing with anything. I, for the record, am not one of them. I think Ben Simmons is burnt out and is having a hard time dealing with failure. I base this off of watching exactly 4 episodes of Dr. Phil. So im pretty qualified to make this call. But I also will not blame any Sixer fan, or any Sixer employee for being skeptical.
The Sixers fined Simmons for not showing up. They fined him a lot of money. He suddenly shows up and is moping around. So hes sent home in order to avoid the media. The next day he shows up and tells the team he was in the wrong but he “wasnt ready to return.” Ok, thats fine. The Sixers started paying him and were willing to get him right. But Daryl Morey walked up to Simmons asking for an update and Simmons couldnt really give him one. So the Sixers fined him again.
If you are the Sixers, why WOULDNT you think he was hiding behind a “Mental illness” claim? I think every Sixers fan can foresee a situation that, if left alone, Simmons would sit out the entire season getting paid. Wasting a year of his contract and not playing one second of basketball. And the reason you can foresee it is because of the way Klutch sports have handled this situation. Suddenly, when the fine restarted, Simmons was willing to meet with the Sixers doctors.
This is Rich Paul’s M.O. He gets his clients paid, and then gets them to force their way out of the market theyre tied to. He did it with Anthony Davis. Hes currently doing it with John Wall. But never has he attempted to do it with a player who has 4 years left on their deal. Never has he tried to do it with a player whos stock has never been lower.
Rich Paul is a snake. But hes a snake who is drowning. League wide his client has become the butt of every joke. And the Sixers arent willing to just trade him for the sake of trading him. If you smell something funny this weekend, its not the schuylkill river, its the desperation from Klutch Sports.