Ben Simmons brutally mocked by 76ers fans at NBA home opener

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·Sports Editor
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Ben Simmons, pictured here being brutally mocked by Philadelphia 76ers fans.
Ben Simmons was brutally mocked by Philadelphia 76ers fans. Image: AAP/Getty

Ben Simmons received no sympathy from Philadelphia fans on Friday as the 76ers played their home opener without the Australian star.

The three-time All-Star guard told the 76ers on Friday that he's not mentally ready to play and needs additional time.

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The latest development came after Simmons was suspended for the 76ers' season opener against New Orleans after he was sent home from practice for refusing to participate in a drill.

When the 76ers hosted the Brooklyn Nets in their home opener on Friday, Philly fans were quick to show their displeasure towards the Australian.

Photos on social media showed some fans had altered their Simmons jerseys, with one taping the word ‘clown’ over his name, while another had the words ‘F***’ and ‘Ben’ stuck on top.

Another person was selling shirts at the Wells Fargo Arena that mocked Simmons, with the Aussie's face and the words 'missing' at the top.

Boos were also heard around the arena when Simmons was shown in a hype video before tip-off.

To his credit, superstar teammate Joel Embiid addressed the crowd before the game and called for some respect for Simmons.

“I urge you guys to continue to support us and our teammate Ben, because he’s still our brother,” he said.

Meanwhile, Kevin Durant had 29 points, 15 rebounds and 12 assists and James Harden scored 20 points as the Nets closed with a 16-1 run to beat the 76ers 114-109.

While Simmons was out for the Sixers, the Nets were missing their own star guard Kyrie Irving.

Irving isn’t with the team due to his refusal to get a Covid-19 vaccine.

Ben Simmons 'not mentally ready' to play for 76ers

Multiple media outlets reported on Friday that Simmons met with head coach Doc Rivers and team medical professionals, while also speaking with Embiid and the rest of the team at the training facility in New Jersey.

Simmons reportedly "accepted everyone needs to take responsibility, including himself."

Simmons' actions on Friday come one day after he did not participate in a scheduled individual work-out at the practice facility. 

He told officials that he had tightness in his back.

Joel Embiid, pictured here addressing Philadelphia 76ers fans before their game against the Brooklyn Nets.
Joel Embiid addresses Philadelphia 76ers fans before their game against the Brooklyn Nets. (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)

The 25-year-old served a one-game suspension for conduct detrimental to the team in Philadelphia's season-opening 117-97 victory over the Pelicans on Wednesday.

Sixers president of basketball operations Daryl Morey took a strong stance on Thursday afternoon in a Philadelphia radio interview with 97.5 The Fanatic.

"People should buckle in. This is gonna go a long time, because my only job is to help give us the best chance to win the title," Morey said. 

"Ben Simmons is a difference-maker, so if we can get him back, he will help us win the title. 

If we can trade Ben Simmons for a difference-maker, we will do it. I think that's best for everyone in this situation."

with agencies

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