SO, WHAT’S THE DEAL ON SIXER BEN SIMMONS’ PLANNED RETURN DATE?

By Julie Glass

Sixers big boss Bryan Colangelo is a man of few words, though more than his predecessor Sam Hinkie!

Though crickets made more sound than Hinkie.

So, it was newsworthy that Colangelo opened up a bit recently on the subject of rookie Ben Simmons, who was taken with the first overall pick in the 2016 draft and has been rehabbing after foot surgery:

“The only reason no one’s giving any kind of a date in terms of an anticipated comeback is because we’re not going to rush,” Colangelo said. “We’re not going to do anything to put him in a position to jeopardize his future career or his impact on this organization. When he’s ready, he’s ready.

“He’s done really well,” Colangelo said. “The biggest issue that he has faced is being a little bit disassociated or disconnected from the team. He can’t travel or hadn’t traveled. I don’t anticipate that’s going to change immediately because he’s really right now stepping into a very important part of the rehabilitative process.”

“When he does come in, we’ve got a special piece that we’re going to put into the fold and see exactly what he can bring,” Colangelo said. “We anticipate that’s going to be a pretty big impact.

“A lot of times, a guy like Ben is going to have the ball going up the floor,” Colangelo said. “What you have to do when you have that kind of a player is, you’ve got to put players around him that A, can shoot the ball but B, can be primary ballhandlers in the event that they’re required to bring to ball up. It’s a unique fit and it may factor into our decision making as we look at free agency, the draft, etcetera.

“We’re going to play with probably a considerable amount of pace (with Simmons),” Colangelo said. “He tends to grab and go … rebound the ball and push the ball up the floor, pass ahead, all the things that he demonstrated not only in college, but quite clearly in summer league. I think that the desire of this team and this organization to play a certain style of play incorporates some of that. It’s definitely something that we’re going to look forward to.”

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