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Is a disgruntled third party biggest concern of Jimmy Butler-Brett Brown drama?

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USA Today Images

Is a disgruntled third party biggest concern of Jimmy Butler-Brett Brown drama?

Now that Sixers swingman Jimmy Butler and coach Brett Brown both had the chance to respond to a story about a supposed confrontation between the two, it’s probably safe to say whatever happened wasn’t quite on the level of Latrell Sprewell choking P.J. Carlesimo — though, that is one way to get coach to call more pick-and-rolls.

If nothing else, Butler and Brown did a nice job downplaying any discord, and in all honesty, I believed them about the nature of the infamous film session. Their version sounds like a healthy dialogue between a coach and star veteran still finding his role in a new offense with a new team, nothing more.

The real question is who in the Sixers organization took that conversation the wrong way?

It’s legitimately concerning, and not just because Butler could leave marks around Brown’s neck for team photo day. It’s concerning because it might reveal potential issues in the Sixers locker room if either A) some players don’t feel comfortable challenging an authority figure and/or B) somebody has a problem with or feels threatened by Butler’s presence.

A is obviously a lot less sinister than B, and plausible given the relative youth of the roster. No doubt, J.J. Redick, Wilson Chandler and Amir Johnson have seen some things as 10-plus-year vets — as Butler said, basketball is still a job, and people do occasionally disagree with their bosses in the real world, too. The rest of the guys, most of whom have never played anywhere else in the NBA or started careers in any field, may not feel comfortable being as vocal yet.

That would be a relatively minor problem, assuming there was any validity to the idea at all. It’s only a guess, but would be preferable to the other possibility.

Somebody in that locker room or building simply doesn’t care very much for Butler.

It’s difficult to envision how anybody benefits from this story leaking, and even Brown insisted it wasn’t planted. Fine, nobody is actively trying to sow dissension within the Sixers. Regardless, somebody felt Butler was being disrespectful, to the point it became discussion-worthy around the league.

Sounds like there might be an ax to grind there. If I’m the Sixers, I’m more worried about who got annoyed and started running their mouth about Butler than I am about Brown’s throat. Between this, the complicated Joel Embiid-Ben Simmons dynamic and the Markelle Fultz saga, infighting might be a bigger threat to the team’s short-term and long-term success than Butler’s antics.

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A first look at the old Vet Stadium Liberty Bell now outside of Citizens Bank Park

A first look at the old Vet Stadium Liberty Bell now outside of Citizens Bank Park

It was 15 years ago today that Veterans Stadium went crumbling to the ground. But a piece of Vet Stadium history has risen from the ashes for a second life at Citizens Bank Park.

The giant 19-foot Liberty Bell that stood high atop Vet Stadium has been refurbished from storage and placed near the Pattison Avenue and 11th street entrance of the ballpark, next to the new Pass and Stow area that will feature a beer garden and some great new food options. The Pass and Stow name is in homage to John Pass and John Stow who re-cast the original Liberty Bell in 1753. Their names can be found on the original, slightly more famous bell with a crack in it across from Independence Hall.

With opening day just a week away, fans passing the ballpark on Thursday got their first glimpse of the bell’s new placement. The bell was installed today.

It’s hard to miss and will surely make a nice new photo opportunity for Phillies fans and out-of-towners looking to capture a memory.

The bell you see today was actually the "second and final bell that was displayed at Veterans Stadium," according to the Phillies. It was installed on the Vet's catwalk prior to the 1983 season and remained there before being removed prior to the Vet's implosion in 2004. It is made of steel and aluminum, weighs more than 5,000 pounds and contains over 300 light bulbs.

The new (old) bell outside the ballpark will make a nice complement to the bell inside the park that lights up and rings whenever a Phillies player hits a home run. In a nice twist, this season the Phillies' team Twitter hashtag will be #RingTheBell. Brett Brown likely approves.

As you can see from the short video of the bell above, the weather in South Philly today was wet and dreary. The forecast for opening day next Thursday when the Phils host the Atlanta Braves is much better, with no rain currently in the forecast and highs in the upper-50s. Not exactly hittin’ weather, but not bad for the first day of baseball either.

We can't wait.

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Here's a look at the Vet going down 15 years ago today. Miss that dirty old place.

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Joel Embiid hangs with Steph Curry, talks about being 'tired of The Process' nickname

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Unanimous Media

Joel Embiid hangs with Steph Curry, talks about being 'tired of The Process' nickname

Joel Embiid was kind enough to grace Steph Curry with at least five minutes of his time when the Sixers traveled out to the Bay Area for their game against the Golden State Warriors back in January.

Joel joined Steph on his series called "5 Minutes From Home" in which the duo sit in the back seat of a car and chat on the way to Mrs. Curry's restaurant. Curiously, the clip lasts over 8 minutes.

Somehow, the two of them didn't mention their sneakers.

There's not a ton of new ground covered in their chat -- Joel talks about his journey onto the basketball court again -- but they do discuss Embiid's desire for a new nickname.

"The Process is never gonna be over. You gotta win a championship. When you win a championship, it starts over."

"I do like [the Process nickname]. Mainly because of the history of how we got here. That's why I like it. I'm actually thinking about creating something else. I'm tired of 'The Process.'"

Any suggestions, Sixers fans?

Embiid and Curry finish their trip with a meal at Steph's wife's restaurant.

The waitress jokes that the burrata appetizer they eat will be the key to the players dropping 50 points in the game the following night.

Almost. Steph went off for 41 but the Sixers got the win.