Doc Rivers called Ben Simmons to quiet James Harden trade rumors

Ky Carlin
·2 min read

The Philadelphia 76ers have been involved in a lot of different trade rumors recently. As Daryl Morey takes over as the team’s President of Basketball Operations, there is a lot of possibilities that the team could be involved in trades due to his track record.

The big one that has been in the news cycle a lot has been the possibility of acquiring superstar James Harden from the Houston Rockets in exchange for young star Ben Simmons. Harden has a history with Morey due to their time together in Houston so there is an obvious link.

The Sixers have stood firm in their stance that they will not trade Simmons in order to get Harden, but things took a turn on Thursday. A report came out that Philadelphia has talked to Houston about including Simmons in a Harden deal, but Morey then denied the report.

As the team prepares for their preseason finale with the Indiana Pacers on Friday, coach Doc Rivers then added that he called Simmons to quiet those rumors.

“I can tell you again that none of this has started from us,” said Rivers. “I gave Ben a call last night but I’m not going to share when we said. It’s unfortunate, but it’s part of our business. It is what it is.”

Seeing that Simmons is only 24, he decided to give him a call and check on his mental state over this stuff. It can be stressful for such a young player to have to deal with all of this right now.

“I think it depends on the guy,” Rivers added. “Ben’s young sometimes you feel like you do. I’m sure there’ll be other times when you don’t feel like you need to. I always just call a player just to check on and get a read from where he’s at. I feel very good about our conversation. Now we can just move forward.”

Should the Sixers get off to a slow start in the 2020-21 season, then things could change and they could look into a drastic move for Harden. At the moment, the team does want to see what this roster can do under the guidance of Rivers.

Until then, they do have a preseason game to prepare for with tipoff from Bankers Life Fieldhouse set for 6:00 p.m. EST.

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