'So much bad blood': Fresh bombshell in Ben Simmons saga

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·Sports Reporter
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Ben Simmons will reportedly not attend training camp with the Philadelphia 76ers.
Ben Simmons has reportedlt told the Philadelphia 76ers he will not attend training camp if the team hasn't traded him by the beginning of next season. (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)

Ben Simmons has reportedly told the Philadelphia 76ers he will not report to training camp if they haven't traded him to another team by that time.

The ultimatum marks the latest turn in an increasingly acrimonious relationship between player and team, kicked off after Simmons' poor performance in the Eastern Conference semi-finals.

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According to the Philadelphia Inquirer's Keith Pompey, Simmons has told coach Doc Rivers and general manager Daryl Morey he does not want to play for the team any more.

The clock began ticking on Simmons' future with the 76ers the moment they were upset by the Atlanta Hawks, with Simmons' reluctance to shoot the ball and poor percentage from the free throw line central to the team's struggles.

The 76ers have actively sought to trade Simmons this offseason, but haven't found a team willing to part with the "king's ransom" Morey seeks in return, according to the report. 

A source told Pompey that "there's so much bad blood between" Simmons and the 76ers. 

The 25-year-old is coming off his third All-Star appearance and his second All-Defensive Team selection in four NBA seasons - but the shooting woes that have plagued his game since joining the NBA were magnified as the top-seeded 76ers failed to reach the Eastern Conference finals.

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The 76ers have been trying to find a suitable deal for Simmons since they were bounced from the NBA Playoffs, despite assurances from Rivers that the team would have a plan to correct the flaws int he Australian's game next season.

Nothing has come to fruition just yet, despite speculation about a potential deal with the Portland TrailBlazers which centred around either Damian Lillard or C.J. McCollum.

NBA trade market for Ben Simmons hard to predict

The Minnesota Timberwolves are believed to be among the most serious suitors for Simmons, but a third team would be required to be able to complete the deal, according to The Athletic's Shams Charania.

Simmons has strong off-court relationships with Timberwolves stars Karl-Anthony Towns and D'Angelo Russell, making the Western Conference battlers an attractive destination.

However, Charania said there was a lot to work out in any potential deal.

“Both sides want the same thing, which is a trade of Ben Simmons out of Philadelphia,” he told Stadium.

“The Sixers started conversations a few weeks before the draft with teams on trying to figure out which offer might be the best.

Ben Simmons' poor performance during the Eastern Conference semi-finals has lead to the breakdown in his relationship with the Philadelphia 76ers. (Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images)
Ben Simmons' poor performance during the Eastern Conference semi-finals has lead to the breakdown in his relationship with the Philadelphia 76ers. (Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images)

“I think they made some headway with some teams, but at the end of the day, they don’t have a deal done. 

"I’m told they’re continuing to talk to teams, Minnesota is one of the most interested teams in Ben Simmons, but a package with them would require a third team and those deals aren’t easy. 

"So what I would expect is a climax to this situation to occur closer to the start of training camp because that’s when there’s going to be pressure." 

Simmons, the No. 1 pick in the 2016 NBA draft and an integral part of "The Process" rebuilding plan alongside Embiid, has averaged 15.9 points, 8.1 rebounds, 7.7 assists, 1.7 steals and 0.7 blocks per game in four NBA seasons. 

His diverse skill set and 6-11 frame make him a one-of-a-kind talent as an NBA point guard. His career 5-of-34 (14.7%) shooting clip from 3-point distance and 59.7% free-throw rate also make him a unique liability as a perimeter player who needs the ball in his hands to succeed.

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