PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Ben Simmons saga continues. The disgruntled all-star is back in town and has rejoined the Sixers.
What kind of reception will he get from his teammates and fans?READ MORE: 4 Shot Inside Park City Center Mall, Lancaster Police Say
There are still no signs that Eyewitness News has seen of Simmons at the training complex Tuesday in Camden.
But many Sixers fans say they’re alright with not seeing him ever again.
“I think he burned his bridge. Time to move on,” fan Jim Walsh said.
Harsh words from a lifelong Sixers fan.
“I always gave him the benefit of the doubt but he doesn’t want to be here and I think it’s just a toxic situation for him to even be here,” Walsh said.
Simmons has been vocal about wanting off of the 76ers, and fans say once you go…READ MORE: 'Everyone Was In Pure Panic': Good Samaritans Rush To Shooting Victims' Aid At Park City Center Mall
“We embrace you. Now you’re talking about you’re not coming back? You’re not showing up to practice. You’re making Doc [Rivers] look bad, you’re making the team look bad. We know you want your money but in order to be in Philly you gotta have some heart,” comedian Buck Wild said.
— CBS Philly (@CBSPhilly) October 12, 2021
While his overall future here is a big question mark, sports experts say winning back the trust of fans and the team will be job number one.
“They have a right to not be happy. This was a player they had high expectations for, selected No. 1 overall in 2016 and he never really developed and had that meltdown during the playoffs and also now he’s spurning you and trying to move on. I don’t think it’s going to be a very welcome reception,” Bodner said.
The mayor of Camden, a former high school and NCAA basketball star is grateful to have the Sixers training complex in his town and hopes everything works itself out.
“The tangibles and the salaries, most of these guys come from humble beginnings of doing what they love to do and they’re just fortunate enough to be doing it on a grand stage that they do it, unfortunately, under a lot of scrutiny. But you get back to the basics doing something you love, just going out there and play. And if he does that, I’m telling you, I look forward. He’s an unbelievable talent,” Mayor Victor Carstarphen said.
And so the speculation will continue. The Sixers’ next preseason game is Friday.MORE NEWS: Man In Critical Condition After Fairhill Shooting, Police Say