Report: 76ers, Ben Simmons in talks to end weeks-long standoff

Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons wipes his face after missing a pair of free-throws during Game 5 against the Atlanta Hawks. (Matt Slocum/AP)

The Philadelphia 76ers and star player Ben Simmons are getting closer to reuniting, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Wojnarowski reports agent Rich Paul and the 76ers are in talks to bring the six-foot-11 guard/forward to camp, though the team continues to explore trade possibilities.

The 76ers and Simmons have been in a standoff for weeks. The club did not pay Simmons the $8.25 million he was owed Oct. 1, according to mulitiple reports.

Simmons’ contract, a five-year, $177 million pact signed in 2019, was structured to include a series of 25 per cent payouts. The $8.25 million figure represents the second of these installments. Simmons had already been paid the first 25 per cent of the money owed to him for the season, according to Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report.

The money the 76ers have withheld from Simmons has been put in an escrow account, according to Tim Bontemps, Brian Windhorst and Bobby Marks of ESPN, with any fines Simmons accrues being deducted from that amount.

For each game Simmons misses, he would forfeit $227,613. That forfeiture, according to Marks, will not come out of the $8.25 million escrow Philadelphia has established.

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