Ben Simmons on seeing Joel Embiid in Philly return: 'We're gonna do our secret handshake'

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Ben Simmons is getting ready to take the floor in Philadelphia as a visitor for the first time since being traded to the Nets last season, and while Joel Embiid won’t play, Simmons still expects to see his former teammate.

“You hope he’s there,” Simmons said. “I assume he’s there.”

Asked what the interaction will likely entail, Simmons cracked a joke with some sarcasm.

“Yeah, we’re gonna do our secret handshake,” Simmons said.

Simmons and Embiid seemed to have a rift in Simmons’ final days with the Sixers, as he was away from the team after requesting a trade following Philly’s playoff exit against the Hawks in 2021. But Simmons downplayed any rivalry between the two, even though they don’t speak much anymore.

“We had a lot of highlights and a lot of great times,” Simmons said. “I’ve got a lot of love for Joel too. Obviously it didn’t work out, but that’s life. Not everything works out in your favor. I wish him the best. Obviously not a championship against us, but the best.

“You’re not cool with everybody. You’re not texting everybody. I think there’s certain people that you just don’t talk to all the time. I got friends I don’t talk to all the time, but we’re still cool. That’s just how life went.”

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