76ers

After backlash, Sixers' Ben Simmons changes his tune on booing

After backlash, Sixers' Ben Simmons changes his tune on booing

CAMDEN, N.J. — It’s hard to say if it was a tougher day for Ben Simmons on or off the court Saturday.

During the Sixers’ Game 1 loss to the Nets, Simmons finished with just nine points, seven rebounds and three assists. When he missed a pair of free throws in the fourth quarter, he elicited boos from the Wells Fargo Center crowd.

Postgame, his reaction wasn’t one that endeared him to Sixers fans.

“If you’re going to boo, then stay on that side. That’s how I feel. If you’re a Sixers fan and you’re going to boo, stay on that side.”

Predictably, that response was not received well.

At the team’s practice facility Sunday, Simmons changed his tune a bit. 

It’s Philly. That’s what’s going to happen. I love it. That’s how Philly is. If you can’t play here, you can’t. They’re going to give you s---, they talk s---, it is what it is. If you’re not playing well, they’re going to let you know, but I love being here. I love the fans here. I wouldn’t want to be in a place where they didn’t really care or only showed up when times are going well. A few years ago we were winning 10 games.

It was an unusually elaborate response from Simmons, who is normally short and snappy when dealing with the media. He was clearly ready for the question and realized that his comments Saturday didn’t sit well with the fan base.

As Game 2 approaches, Simmons knows he has to move on from the postgame comments and be better. Brooklyn did an excellent job sagging off him and at times, the point guard looked tentative.

He knows that to succeed in this series, he needs to have a different mindset.

“Sometimes. Some games,” Simmons said when asked if he needed to set the tone for his team. “You just have to feel it out, but I think this is probably one of those series. I got a feeling.”

Short and snappy on that one.

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Why it makes sense that Kyle Korver signed with Bucks over Sixers

Why it makes sense that Kyle Korver signed with Bucks over Sixers

Sixers fans hoping for a Kyle Korver reunion got disappointing news Saturday afternoon.

The veteran sharpshooter is reportedly signing a deal with the Milwaukee Bucks, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Korver’s decision was down to the Bucks and the Sixers. Ultimately, Korver chose the Bucks because of his relationship with head coach Mike Budenholzer. It makes sense. Korver enjoyed the best stretch of his career in four-plus seasons with the Atlanta Hawks, including his only All-Star appearance. The 2014-15 Hawks, which featured Sixers general manager Elton Brand and forward Mike Scott, won 60 games and got to the Eastern Conference Finals.

While the Sixers could’ve used Korver’s shooting to help space the floor, he’s 38 years old  — he’ll turn 39 in March — and would’ve occupied the team’s 14th roster spot. It’s a slight disappointment, but not a huge concern. With all things even between the Sixers and Bucks as far as both teams’ ability to contend, Korver chose to play for his former coach.

The veteran free agent pool is getting thinner, but there are a couple guys that might be able to help. Iman Shumpert is a veteran wing with championship experience. Shaun Livingston has even more of that experience from his time with the Warriors. Thabo Sefolosha is a 3-and-D type that is used to fitting into roles on winning teams.

The Sixers on Friday signed 7-foot-4 center Christ Koumadje to an Exhibit 10 deal, which we explained here. Koumadje is more likely getting a look for the Delaware Blue Coats than anything. The team has the minimum 13 players signed to guaranteed NBA deals. The maximum is 15.

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Sixers sign center Christ Koumadje to partially guaranteed contract

Sixers sign center Christ Koumadje to partially guaranteed contract

Updated: 6:40 p.m.

Elton Brand isn’t messing around when it comes to depth at center.

The Sixers are signing big man Christ Koumadje to an Exhibit 10 contract.

Koumadje, who stands 7-foot-4, is an undrafted rookie out of Florida State. He played with the Sixers’ summer league team in Las Vegas, averaging six points, 5.8 rebounds and 2.4 blocks in 13.7 minutes a game. He also had issues with fouls, committing 4.8 a contest — players get 10 fouls in summer league play.

If Koumadje, 23, gets into an NBA game, he will be the first player from the country of Chad in north-central Africa to do so. He’d also be the tallest player in the league — if the Celtics don’t sign the 7-foot-7 Tacko Fall to an NBA deal. There is a possibility that Koumadje is simply an extra camp body and the team is giving him a hard look for its G-League affiliate, the Delaware Blue Coats. 

The contract has an Exhibit 10 attachment. In that instance, the team has the right to convert the contract to a two-way deal. The Sixers already have their two-way spots filled with Marial Shayok and Norvel Pelle, but things can certainly change. If a two-way deal is not offered off the Exhibit 10, the player can be waived and then sign with the team’s G-League affiliate for up to $50,000, more than a general G-League contract.

Brand already made it a point to increase the depth behind Joel Embiid, signing veterans Al Horford and Kyle O’Quinn.

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