Danny Green predicts Ben Simmons won’t play in Nets-76ers next week: ‘We all know he does not like to play in Philly’

Danny Green and Ben Simmons in Memphis Grizzlies v Philadelphia 76ers
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Traded from the 76ers to the Nets then asked whether he could be physically and mentally ready to play in Philadelphia on March 10 , Ben Simmons said, “I hope so.”

Among those less convinced: Former 76ers teammate Danny Green.

Green on his podcast, via Adam Herman of NBC Sports Philadelphia:

First, I’d be highly surprised if he even plays in that game. I don’t know where his health is – mentally, physically, I know he had other issues – and we all know he does not like to play in Philly. So if he does play in that game, I’d be highly surprised.

Simmons didn’t play for the 76ers this season, saying he’s not mentally ready to play. He said his mental-health issues weren’t just about seeking a trade. But if you believe Simmons to be sincere, it sure sounded like at least some of his issues were tied to the environment in Philadelphia.

Well before his trade request, Simmons criticized booing 76ers fans. Deliberately or not (take a guess), Embiid threw gas onto the fire by saying booing 76ers motivated him to improve, then, in a discussion of Simmons, adding “but not everyone is built like that.”

It’s also easy to see how former Philadelphia teammates would resent Simmons undermining their championship pursuit. Whatever his reasons for demanding a trade and sitting out, Simmons left the 76ers bearing a high coast. With Green sounding a little snippy, that’ll only further rile up Philadelphia fans.

If Simmons ever plays in Philadelphia again, the crowd will be unforgiving. Simmons’ perceived fragility is a massive target for a notoriously brutal fan base. Even if not crossing lines, 76ers fans can create an incredibly unwelcoming environment.

Simmons is reportedly dealing with a sore back. So, that’s another reason to believe he won’t play in Philadelphia next week.

But after such a monumental trade and everything that happened between Simmons and the 76ers leading up to it, his return game will be highly followed.

Whenever it happens.