By Jerry Wein

The Ben Simmons Era is coming to a close after five years of hype that melted down to a puddle last June in the playoffs against Atlanta.

The only question in this long good-bye is:

Where will Daryl Morey chip his overrated ass and who will the Sixers snag in return.

Now it appears his saga with the Sixers is over:

The Sixers come to camp on Tuesday, Sep. 28, but with the preseason in less than two weeks, not even the threat of financial penalties will end Ben’s holdout.

Failure to show up to preseason and/or regular-season games could cost Simmons $227,613 per.

The Sixers can fine him more money if he doesn’t show up to media day and/or practices.

He’s owed 50% of his $33 million contract for the 2021-22 season on Oct. 1.

Ben’s breaking point was Philly’s Game 7 Eastern Conference Finals loss to the Atlanta Hawks, when he passed up a wide-open dunk that would’ve tied the game in the fourth quarter. Fans booed him, and later he felt the organization was scapegoating him.

After the game, when asked if Simmons could be a point guard on a championship team, head coach Doc Rivers replied, “I don’t know.”

But on ESPN’s “First Take” Wednesday morning, Rivers said, “Ben has a long contract. So it’s in our hands, and we want him back.”

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