Joel Embiid, Sixers in hot water if Ben Simmons saga doesn’t end soon
Even with no NBA basketball for a couple of months, the Philadelphia 76ers continued to flood the news in the sporting world because of all the Ben Simmons shenanigans. There have been negative progress with the relationship between Simmons, his teammates, and the 76ers franchise. Currently, Simmons has approached the team and admitted that he is going through mental health struggles which prevents from playing in the games of the 76ers. This will, unfortunately, result in guys like Joel Embiid facing a lot of questions about the situation.
The Sixers have told the media that they will have doctors to check on the condition of Simmons. Tobias Harris and Joel Embiid have expressed their desire to accept Simmons to the team once again as their brother despite the stubbornness and unwillingness of Simmons to suit up and play again for the 76ers. The relationship seems unfixable, but they must still deal with an unpleasant player until they deal him to another franchise.
76ers general manager Daryl Morey is willing to through the rough stretches of being patient and waiting for a disgruntled superstar he could acquire in exchange for Simmons. He is not willing to execute a swap that wherein he will acquire several role players of a couple of draft picks. With that in mind, Simmons currently takes an empty spot in the 76ers roster as they are having trouble finding a replace to his contribution on both sides of the court.
Even with their opening game victory versus the New Orleans Pelicans, there is still a huge cause of concern after they surrendered a huge double digit to the Kyrie Irving-less Brooklyn Nets in the following game. The Pelicans did not their best player in Zion Williamson, and they are not expected to reach the playoffs this season. As the 76ers will be continually tasked to defeat the top contenders in the East, Joel Embiid will have an insurmountable time carrying the offensive load for the squad.
Tobias Harris has always been a consistent contributor, but his play is not enough to be the number two option for a championship contending franchise. Seth Curry and Tyrese Maxey can easily score 20-25 points over a series of games, but the consistency of helping Embiid is what will be lacking for the 76ers over the course of a 82-game season.
With the massive improvements of several Eastern Conference teams, the Sixers will have difficulty maintaining one of the top spots in the East. Embiid is known to miss 15-20 games every season because of his unreliable durability over the course of his career. Even with the Andre Drummond signing as a backup for Embiid, it will not be enough to replicate their success from last season.
If the 76ers do not trade Simmons this season or if he does not suit up at any game, they will slide all the way down to a spot in the play-in tournament. It could be debated that they are more talented the Nets, Milwaukee Bucks, Miami Heat, Atlanta Hawks, Boston Celtics, and New York Knicks, but these six teams have a core that is stronger than the Sixers.
Injuries are inevitable which could drastically tilt the performance of these franchises, but the uncertainty and chaos with Simmons could increase some internal turmoil in the team. The Sixers were the No. 1 seed in the East last season, but their offseason additions cannot offset the impact and performance of Simmons with his facilitating abilities and defensive prowess.
With still a long way to go in the 75th season of the NBA, the Sixers have an immense cause of concern with Simmons and the supporting cast of Joel Embiid. They could still add instrumental pieces that will fit the system of Rivers, and the Sixers fans must hope for change to occur in the City of Brotherly Love.