MIAMI — Scratch that January timetable for Ben Simmons, at least for now.
Sixers coach Brett Brown said on Friday night that he “misspoke” earlier in the day when he said that Simmons, the NBA’s No. 1 overall draft pick for 2016, is on schedule to return from foot surgery in January.
This had been the first time the Sixers put a timetable on the return of Simmons, who rolled his ankle when he landed on the foot of another player during an intra-squad scrimmage on Sept. 30.
On Friday night, before the Sixers played the Miami Heat, Brown said he misspoke on Simmons because he was “just getting excited about when he might be able to come back. There were so many dates and speculation that as a coach you sort of hear what you want to hear at times.
“I did mention a January hopeful return, and that was premature. That was a coach doing a lot more wishing than receiving instruction.”
Simmons, a 6-10, 240-pounder from Australia, was the national Freshman of the Year last season at LSU and then decided to bolt for the pros after just one collegiate year.
In six NBA summer league games earlier this year, Simmons averaged 10.8 ponits, 7.7 rebounds and 5.5 assists.
“We will play this out,” Brown said of Simmons. “Everything is on track with his rehab. It’s only been two weeks since the surgery. Over a short period of time, we will be better prepared to give a statement that will map out his future.”