There was no guarantee made by Ben Simmons that he’ll stay with the Philadelphia 76ers forever, but he did provide a positive response to the idea. Although Simmons’ contract extension is on the horizon, but not here yet, there’s been plenty of talk about the potential deal for the reigning NBA Rookie of the Year.
And during an interview on the Laugh Out Loud Network’s ‘Cold As Balls’ segment with noted Sixers fan Kevin Hart, Simmons had an interesting response to one comment from the comedian. While Hart joked that he was sending out tweets from his burner accounts, the first of which concluded with him telling Donovan Mitchell to “suck it,” but he had one more to send after.
Ben Simmons: “Another one?”
Kevin Hart: “Yeah, I’ve got a lot of the burner accounts –– This just in, Ben Simmons said he’s never leaving Philadelphia, send.”
Ben Simmons: “That’s a pretty good tweet.”
For Sixers fans, it certainly is a good tweet, and Simmons’ response to it was surely even more well-received. Unfortunately, nothing will be set in stone even for the All-Star’s next contract until a bit further down the road.
Ben Simmons’ Future Contract Extension
While Simmons is under contract through 2019-20 with a cap number of more than $8.11 million, per Spotrac, he can begin negotiating a long-term extension prior to that. As ESPN detailed previously, the Sixers guard becomes eligible for a five-year max deal in July of 2019. There’s virtually no question he’ll get that deal, but whether or not it comes this offseason could be an interesting topic.
The Sixers will likely make a push to re-sign both Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris after the year, and Simmons’ contract could (and should) be the priority sooner than later. If he does not sign a new deal this offseason, the 22-year-old would become a restricted free agent during the 2020 offseason.
Ben Simmons Continues Dominance After Big First Year
Simmons’ first year in the league was more than a bit impressive, as he averaged 15.8 points, 8.2 assists and 8.1 rebounds per game en route to his first NBA award. But through 57 games of year two, the 6-foot-10 guard has actually been even better, increasing his scoring and rebounding averages to 16.8 points and 9.0 rebounds. He’s also tallied 7.9 assists per game while shooting 57.1 percent from the field (up from 54.5 percent last year).
Even with the Sixers boasting a more talented roster this year, Simmons has had little trouble filling up the box score. He’s showing virtually no signs of slowing down and the fact that he doesn’t shoot from beyond the arc hasn’t impacted his game much if at all through the first 138 games of his career. Simmons very well may have one of the highest ceilings of any player in the NBA, and he’ll only continue to improve from here.