Simmons was having an outstanding run with the Philadelphia 76ers, and many thought his partnership with Joel Embiid would yield a championship. However, the Aussie blew up an easy chance late in the 2021 Eastern Conference semifinals in Game 7 and lost all favor with fans.
With Simmons not feeling welcome in Philly anymore, he decided to force his way out by refusing to play. He got his wish on trade deadline day and was part of a package the Sixers used to trade for James Harden.
Although Simmons has been with the Nets since February, he has not played a game for Brooklyn. However, he believes his style of play will fit perfectly with the players on the team.
On "The Old Man and the Three" with JJ Reddick, Simmons was asked about his role and how he fits in with the team. He replied:
"The talent that we have and the type of players that we have, we're going to be able to run the floor easily. We got Clax (Nik Claxton), who can run, he moves incredibly well; Kev (Durant); Patty (Mills); Kai (Irving); Joe (Harris); just got Royce (O'Neale), another great 3-and-D guy.
"I'm missing people, but, yeah, I think this team right now is just a great fit for what I do and what I bring to the game. I feel like it's Philly on steroids kind of."
With Simmons, the Sixers had a team that could contend for the title. Sadly for their fans, they never got past the conference semifinals.
Can the Brooklyn Nets compete for the 2023 title despite a tumultuous offseason?
The Nets have had an eventful offseason, one filled with several trade rumors. They were on the verge of losing their star players but eventually resolved their differences.
Kevin Durant requested a trade before the start of free agency. A month later, he asked owner Joe Tsai to fire his general manager and head coach.
Although KD has rescinded his request and decided to stay, many wonder how they will all work together. There might be some tension, which might affect the chemistry.
All drama aside, the Nets have one of the strongest teams. They have elite-level scorers, and the addition of Simmons and Royce O'Neale will bolster their defense.