Yet, no deal has happened.
After that escalation, there was at least some hope tension would dissipate as both Simmons and Philadelphia made peace with the uncomfortable situation.
But as training camp approaches, neither appears to be bending.
The expectation remains, one week out from 76ers media day, that Ben Simmons will choose not to report to the team's training camp, league sources say. But the Sixers, sources say, remain intent on trying to convince Simmons to report.
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— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) September 20, 2021
Maybe Simmons will actually report. It’s easier to threaten to hold out than actually hold out. An actual holdout could cost him money and tarnish his reputation.
But a holdout could also hasten his departure from Philadelphia.
If he shows up, Simmons helps the 76ers on the floor and removes a sense of urgency to trade him. He allows his teammates and coaches to avoid some difficult questions. And he might improve his value after a rough postseason.
Philadelphia has gotten offers for Simmons. The 76ers just haven’t accepted one. To Simmons, Philadelphia getting underwhelming offers isn’t his problem. He just wants the team to take one.
So, there are reasons to threaten to hold out – and maybe even hold out.
However, the reasons to report will come to the forefront once training camp actually opens. At that point, it’s at least possible Simmons takes a different tact.