Kevin Durant Reveals Thoughts On Ben Simmons’ Return To Philly

Kevin Durant, Ben Simmons, Philadelphia 76ers, NBA News
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The Brooklyn Nets will be paying their first visit to the Philadelphia 76ers since the two teams completed a blockbuster trade ahead of the 2022 NBA Trade Deadline. The fans in Philadelphia will create a hostile environment as the Nets should be prepared for a lot of heckling.

The person who will be drawing most of their ire is Ben Simmons. Simmons has not suited up yet this season and won’t be on the court for the Nets tonight, but he will be on the bench with his new team.

Given how things transpired, there are plenty of people who will be in the arena that will want to share their feelings with Simmons and none of them are going to be positive ones. Nets’ head coach Steve Nash touched on the subject earlier this week and believes that Simmons is ready for what lies ahead.

Nash said those kinds of environments are what made basketball special for him. It is one of the things he said he misses most about playing. He likely never heard anything like what Simmons will when he enters the arena.

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Kevin Durant also spoke about it during a recent press conference. Heckling and getting under the opponent’s skin is the biggest impact that fans can have on the game. Durant went as far as saying they don’t even like basketball some of them, they just want to take their problems out on someone else.

“I’m sure there’s going to be some personal attacks; there’s going to be some words that may trigger you personally,” Durant said. “But, that’s just how fans are. They want to get under our skin, let their voices be heard. Part of the experience of coming to an NBA game is the heckling.

“Some people don’t even enjoy basketball. Their lives are so s—-y that they get to just aim it at other people.”

Despite not playing in the game, tonight will be a step in the process for Simmons putting everything behind him. The first time going back to Philadelphia will be the toughest, but it will get easier every time he has to go back.

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Being division rivals, Simmons and the Brooklyn Nets will face off with the 76ers four times per season; two times at Barclays Center and twice in Philadelphia. The boos will certainly be loudest in Philadelphia, but it is something Durant mentioned that the greats always deal with.

“All the greats have been through being called the worst names in the history of the book,” Durant said. “The good thing about it is that we get a chance to perform and shut the people up.”

Kevin Durant has certainly quieted many fans in his career. Ben Simmons assuredly is hopeful that he will be doing the same with his new team once he is ready to get back on the court.

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