Ben Simmons has not played a single game for the Philadelphia 76ers this season but that has not stopped Klutch Sports from campaigning for him to be named an NBA All-Star.
Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul represents Simmons and has been actively pushing for a trade since the Sixers crashed out of the playoffs last season at the hands of the Atlanta Hawks.
While there has been plenty of interest in Simmons, Philadelphia is yet to budge in its demand of an All-Star-calibre return for the Australian.
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The Sixers know Simmons, even if not on the court, has plenty of value as a three-time All-Star.
As for whether Simmons will earn his fourth All-Star honours this season, Klutch Sports made a cheeky attempt on Sunday to sway NBA fans to vote that way.
Klutch Sports had tweeted in support of all the players it manages but the decision to draw attention to Simmons invited plenty of commentary in the NBA world.
Some was positive, branding it hilarious while others were less than impressed that Klutch would open Simmons up to even more scrutiny.
Philadelphia sports talk radio host Glen Macnow agreed with the latter take.
“If Ben Simmons’ agents were really prioritising his mental health, they wouldn’t be embarrassing him with a campaign to get him into the All-Star Game,” he tweeted.
“It just shows what a sham this whole thing is.”
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Klutch Sports CEO Paul had criticised the Sixers earlier in the year for only adding to the mental health issues that have seen Simmons sidelined the entire season.
“I truly believe the fines, the targeting, the negative publicity shined on the issue—that’s very unnecessary and has furthered the mental health issues for Ben,” Paul told The Athletic at the time.
“Either you help Ben, or come out and say he’s lying. Which one is it?
“In this case, we have to get Ben help and not put finances above mental health. I understand contractual obligations and I hold myself accountable in this business. But if someone is telling you something, we can no longer turn a blind eye in today’s world.
“This is no longer about a trade. This is about finding a place where we can help Ben get back to his mental strength and get back on the floor. I want him on the floor playing the game that he loves.”