Ben Simmons' tenure with the Philadelphia 76ers ended in infamy. His final game with the franchise will always be remembered for him passing on a wide-open dunk and the Sixers blowing a series lead to the Atlanta Hawks.
As exposed as Simmons was during the game and the series, Joel Embiid and Doc Rivers put most of the blame on him after the game. That's not supposed to happen, at least not in front of the media.
So, now that he's no longer with the organization, Simmons looked back to that incident and finally admitted that Embiid and Rivers threw him under the bus. Unsurprisingly, that took a big toll on him and his confidence.
NBA News: Ben Simmons Admits Joel Embiid And Doc Rivers Threw Him Under The Bus
(Via The Old Man & The Tree and Yahoo)
"Simmons: I'm already dealing with a lot mentally in life, as a lot of people do, but it got to a point where after that [Hawks] series I'm getting - it's from the people you're supposed to have the support from, that comfort from, and I wasn't getting that either. So it was a toll on me. And then mentally I just, it killed me. I was like, 'F***.' No energy for anything, I was in a dark place. It took me a long time - the first thing for me was to identify, 'Okay, I've gotta really get right. It's not a physical thing, it's mentally.' I think that first thing of acknowledging it was a huge step for me. [...] I think that was tough for me, knowing I didn't really have that support either, from teammates or whatever it was at the time -
Redick: No, let's call it like it is. Let's call it like it is. You know that I love Joel [Embiid] and you know that I love Doc [Rivers], but they essentially threw you under the bus after Game 7.
Simmons: For sure, for sure.
Redick: Like, that's indisputable.
Simmons claimed he wasn't mentally ready to be back on the floor last season, but he's finally ramping up his recovery and is expected to have a big role with the Brooklyn Nets, so it'll be quite interesting to see him perform vs. this former team.