NBA

Shaquille O’Neal on Ben Simmons: “his team should’ve been professional”

Jun 20, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons warms up before game seven of the second round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs against the Atlanta Hawks at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

After his disastrous performance against the Hawks in the Eastern Conference semi-finals and criticism from both Doc Rivers and Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons doesn’t intend on playing for the 76ers again. Simmons’ displeasure with the organization has confused one of the greatest centers of all time, Shaquille O’Neal.

Shaq expressed his confusion in a recent interview with Mark Medina of USA Today, saying he doesn’t understand why the all-star guard is upset.

“I think Ben and his team should’ve been a little bit more professional. They should’ve gone to the office and said, ‘OK, if you don’t want us, we don’t want to be here. Now let’s make a trade.”

Shaquille O’Neal

This isn’t the first time Shaquille O’Neal has voiced his opinion on Ben Simmons. While speaking to Charles Barkley on The Big Podcast with Shaq, O’Neal ripped Ben Simmons’ trade request to shreds.

Ben Simmons was absent from 76ers media day and the start of training camp. The start point guard and his team at Klutch sports have been adamant about not playing for the team again. They feel that The organization has disrespected Simmons after their loss to the Atlanta Hawks.

In that series, Simmons averaged just under 10 points along with almost nine assists. However, what made headlines was Simmons’ lack of aggressiveness and his free-throw-line struggles. Ben Simmons only took six shots per game in that series and shot a miserable 33.3% from the line.

His free throw percentage was the worst of any player in a playoff series in NBA history. But, Simmons has also proven to be an elite defender and playmaker through his first four seasons.

The 76ers have also tried to mend their relationship with Simmons. Doc Rivers has tried to backtrack on what he said after the game seven loss to the Hawks. Also, his teammates have been attempting to meet with him in Los Angeles, where Simmons resides. However, according to Adrian Wojnarowski, Ben Simmons “has no plans to wear an NBA uniform again until he is moved to a new team.”

The relationship between Ben Simmons and the Philadelphia 76ers is all but over in Ben Simmons’ eyes. Though the Sixers will continue to try and get Simmons back for the regular season, which starts in three weeks, it seems that the star point guard will not budge and will continue to demand a trade.

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