By Connor Thomas
Yesterday, Philadelphia 76ers fans everywhere got the huge Woj bomb that they’ve been waiting months for: Rich Paul, Daryl Morey, and Elton Brand had lunch!!
ESPN Sources: Agent for Ben Simmons – Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul – met with Sixers’ Daryl Morey and Elton Brand to discuss status of stalemate today. Stances unchanged: Simmons no closer to playing this season – and Sixers determined to bring back a significant player in trade.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 12, 2022
From the report that Woj put out following the meeting, it seems like lunch is all the trio had. According to that twitter thread, the three met, ate, and had very little progress when it came to reaching a solution to the cold war that has existed between Simmons/Klutch Sports and the Sixers brass for months now. The two topics of conversation were of course whether or not Simmons was ready to return to play for the Sixers, and if not, whether or not the Sixers were any closer to finding a deal with enough value to pull the trigger on moving the star point guard. The big news was that there was no news. Paul apparently let the Morey and Brand know that Simmons has not changed his stance on not being ready to return to playing basketball for the Sixers, a stance that has cost the 25 year old millions upon millions of dollars in fines. Morey and Brand made it clear that, just like they have repeatedly said since the beginning of this saga, they will only grant Simmons relief by trade if they get back a package that matches his lofty value.
Both sides are firmly entrenched, and neither have really blinked to this point. So, what does this mean for the situation as a whole? Well, it shows just how long this issue has the potential to carry on for. First, people talked about Simmons being moved prior to training camp. Then, once he started being fined by the Sixers, the talks were getting him out before the season. The narrative has shifted to the trade deadline, but the landscape of the NBA would have to change significantly, it seems, for a desirable package to become available. There is a very real chance that Ben Simmons does not play basketball this season in any capacity, and the Sixers are left to address trade options over the upcoming offseason. It’s not ideal for any sides, but in this type of situation, an ideal outcome may not exist. The bottom line is that there is no news on the Simmons front, and the longer that remains the headline, the more likely it is that Simmons will be a Sixer for the remainder of this season.