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NBA

76ers' Ben Simmons wants to 'step away' from basketball

Update:
76er Ben Simmons hss informed his team that he is not mentally fit to play to his expecations.. The Australian will have to fight to earn his spot.

As his standoff with the 76ers continues, Ben Simmons holds his ground.

76ers' Ben Simmons needs a time out

Ben Simmons informed his team of his intentions to 'step away' stating a doubt about his mental ability to play to his expectations. Simmons had a private meet 'step away' sing with coach Doc Rivers, medical staff and teammates on Friday during which he spoke of his reasons for wanting to have a break.

Where do the 76ers stand?

To date Simmons has incurred almost $2 million in fines as a result of his absennce from games and practice sessions alike. According to the NBA's collective bargaining agreement, however, there is protection for a player that cites mental disability as a reason for an inability to perform.

Head coach Doc Rivers when speaking with the media after the meeting with Simmons made it clear that it was a positive step for the 76ers. "Today was a productive day," he said. "I'm glad it happened," He said. Rivers went on to add, "i've felt good, up-and-down, throughout, and I kept saying that to you guys," Rivers said.

For more from the NBA

"Things do change. That still doesn't mean that, you know, it's going to work out perfect. Or it could. I've always believed that. I've never wavered from that. I've said that a hundred times, and I still stick with it."

Joel Embiid supports Ben Simmons

"It's good to have you back!" Embiid said as he addressed fans. "On behalf of my teammates, the organization and myself, I just want to say thank you for your support for all these years.A lot has happened the last few months and I hope you guys continue to support us and our teammate Ben, because he's still our brother. Let's  go!

What will Ben Simmons do now?

Most recently, the All-star guard left the team's facility on Thursday without participating in training. Having explained he was suffering from discomfort in the back, he was subsequently cleared by the 76ers medical staff. Despite the back an forth, the 76ers position remains clear. They will not accept a trade for Simmons unless an all star is involved in the deal. Simmons agent Rich Paul informed team officials that Simmons is not mentally prepared to play.

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