October 02, 2016
When the Sixers took the floor at their brand new training facility in Camden, Ben Simmons wasn’t there. Perhaps the top overall pick in last June’s NBA Draft was preparing to surgically repair the fractured fifth metatarsal bone of his right foot?
Not so fast, according to Sixers president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo.
“Nothing has been determined as of yet with regard to a surgery or a timeline or anything of the sort,” Colangelo said. “We are continuing the process of evaluating and seeking an addition medical opinion across the board.”
Initial reports held that Simmons would undergo surgery and miss around three months, slotting an official return to the court sometime in December, or more conservatively, January. And while Colangelo admitted that the surgery route for Simmons is “likely,” the Sixers are still looking for medical opinions and expertise.
“That determination [on surgery] has not been made with 100 percent certainty, but it’s likely,” Colangelo said. “That’s my best read on this so far.”
At first, the Sixers were hopeful that Simmons had just rolled his ankle landing on the foot of teammate Shawn Long at the team’s last training camp practice at Stockton University on Friday. After the top overall pick received an X-ray and MRI, it was concluded that he had fractured his right foot.
Colangelo said that doctors had told him Simmons’ injury is “acute,” but he wouldn’t get into specifically what type of fracture it (avulsion or Jones) is.
What he did lay out was a general philosophy for Simmons’ rehab, which is the same one that the Sixers stuck to under his predecessor Sam Hinkie: patience.
“This is a process that we will go through the same way we handled other injury situations in the past. You can just point to Joel Embiid as a perfect case in point."
“I do want to also point out that in no way, shape, or form are we going to rush him back,” Colangelo said. “This is a process that we will go through the same way we handled other injury situations in the past. You can just point to Joel Embiid as a perfect case in point.
“We’re going to let the medical professionals dictate the course of action in terms of both rehabilitation, recovery, and return to action.”
Without Simmons, the Sixers will begin their preseason slate on Tuesday night at 7:00 p.m. against the Boston Celtics in Amherst, Massachusetts.
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