The Philadelphia 76ers are going through yet another transitional phase after a disappointing end to a season. Head coach Brett Brown was let go, and former Los Angeles Clippers head coach Doc Rivers was hired quickly after becoming available.
With Rivers signaling another culture change in Philadelphia, the questions are starting to get asked about the futures of Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons. Rivers seems to believe the All-Star combination works.
“[Simmons and Embiid] have won 65 percent of the games that they’ve played in,” Rivers said during his introductory presser. “It clearly works when they play together. If you’ve watched my teams, I rarely say that a guy is a 1, a 2 — I don’t get lost in the minutiae. I don’t get lost in what position guys play. I look at how many points we score as a team. I don’t care how we score. My teams have always been very good offensively, in the top five overall. And we score points, and we score points in a lot of different ways.
“We’ve got Ben that scores points, we have Joel, we have Tobias [Harris], we have Shake [Milton], we have Josh [Richardson]. This team’s loaded with talent and we’ve just gotta figure out how to make it work the best. But just looking at the numbers, when those two play together they win 65 percent of the games that they play in. That’s a good thing.”
The trade rumors have been swirling in Philadelphia with Simmons or Embiid potentially on the trading block. The immediate futures of these star players were contingent on the team’s next head coach.
Rivers, who has coached many big-name players and egos over the years, seems willing to take on the challenge of coaching Simmons and Embiid as a duo. However, that could change quickly if the 76ers start receiving intriguing trade offers.