Ben Simmons, the top overall pick of the 2016 NBA Draft, has suffered a broken foot during training camp and the team has not addressed how long he will be sidelined.
Simmons sustained the injury Friday during the final training camp scrimmage at Stockton University in New Jersey. The Sixers said Simmons rolled an ankle, and X-rays and an MRI revealed a fractured fifth metatarsal bone.
The Australian forward played at LSU last season. He missed time early during his stay with the Tigers while waiting for an ankle injury to heal, and also left an NBA Summer League contest in July after suffering cramps in both legs.
Simmons’ injury is the latest blow to a franchise that has been beset in recent years by injuries to their players. Joel Embiid, the No. 3 overall pick in 2014, has yet to play because of surgeries on his right foot. Nerlens Noel missed his rookie year in 2013 with a torn ACL. Jahlil Okafor had his rookie season cut short with season-ending knee surgery on his right knee. He sat out practices this week because he still experienced soreness in the knee.
It’s become a bit of a theme in Philly the last few seasons, ending with last season’s 10-72 mark that earned them the No. 1 pick.
Simmons became an instant fan favorite before he ever played a game and expectations were high that he was the cornerstone player that could eventually help turn the Sixers into playoff contenders.
“It means a lot, just to see people wearing my jersey around Philly, it’s kind of weird,” he said this week. “I’m just looking forward to hopefully giving back to Philly.”
For now he and Sixers fans will have to wait.