Not only did Ben Simmons ditch the boot and put on a pair of sneakers at the Sixers' practice in Camden yesterday, the rookie also took to his Instagram Live page to share a number of updates with the 4,000 or so fans (and teammates) who were watching.
Ben wasn't shy about showing off the spectacular views from his appartment of City Hall in Center City. His pad -- and little kitty -- looked pretty chill. Simmons was playing the Grand Theft Auto video game while thousands of people watched.
Obviously fans wanted to know about the foot.
Simmons said -- and I'm paraphrasing here because I was also watching it live on my phone -- that there have been no setbacks and that the foot is doing well. He's in the gym everyday and was planning to be there again today bright and early.
Simmons was asked who he was buddies with on the team and pointed to Dario Saric and Timothé Luwawu-Cabarrot.
Then another one of his pals popped up his feed and asked him for his thoughts on The Process.
"How do you feel about The Process?" Embiid asked.
Now, I forget the exact wording he used, but I'm pretty sure he said Embiid was a "beast" when he's out on the floor. He also said we all better watch out for all of the dimes that are going to be dropped when Simmons and The Process finally team up.
Embiid liked the "dimes" answer.
I could only watch Ben Simmons' face as he played video games for so long, but apparently I missed out on some other Embiid hijinx on Simmons feed.
Embiid also popped up on the live feed for his internet frenemy Chandler Parsons to ask him if he was a virgin.
He later asked Simmons if he was a virgin and pointed out that "Chandler Parsons is." Ha.
No word on Simmons' response.
The last time the Flyers were in an outdoor game, Ilya Bryzgalov was drinking from a thermos on the bench while Sergei Bobrovsky started against the Rangers five years ago.
Fast forward to Saturday night. Bryzgalov is out of the NHL, Bobrovsky has himself in the conversation for his second Vezina Trophy in Columbus, and the Flyers face off against the Penguins at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh in a Stadium Series game … weather permitting.
The weather is expected to cooperate tonight, though. The forecast called for rain today and temperatures in the 50s, but it hasn't rained much. The temperature is expected to drop into the 40s and 30s, and may even hit a lot of 28, according to Weather.com.
Don't tell Bryzgalov that. "Bryz" took to Twitter to offer advice for Flyers and Penguins fans attending the Stadium Series match tonight.
You don't need no stinkin' thermos.
If you're not following Bryzgalov on Twitter, you should click that follow button now. He's always an entertaining follow.
There's your Philadelphia 76ers season in a nutshell, huh? Nerlens Noel gets traded for an all-lemon pack of Starbursts, Ben Simmons' right foot is still apparently stuck in a beartrap, Joel Embiid can't get himself dismissed from the nurse's office, and Jahlil Okafor is forced back into +1 status after everyone else passed on going to the concert with Bryan Colangelo -- and the Ballers still go out and beat one of the best teams in the East in their first game back from the All-Star break. Nearly everything about the Sixers is depressing right now, except for the team themselves. They're cool.
Kudos to Brett Brown, man. The team is playing with such fluency and energy right now that it can withstand some losses in personnel without the drop-off being particularly dramatic -- at least for the moment. Replacing Embiid and Noel with Okafor and Holmes for as long as we'll have to do it will catch up with us in time, but for now, all you can do is marvel at the pace, cohesion and (with some mildly glaring moments of exception) discipline that Brown has the guys playing at the moment. I doubt there are five coaches in the league having a more impressive season than him right now.
But the players were pretty good in this one, too. Dario Saric had 20-11-4 in his first start in three weeks, continuing his unlikely Rookie of the Year surge with his third-straight double-double and fourth game of 20-plus in his last six games. The All-Star Break hasn't cooled Robert Covington's hot hand, as the shooter went 5-9 from deep last night and is now 17-31 on threes over his last four games, also posting a 20-10 night with his 25 points and 11 boards. (Also three assists and four steals, whatever.) Richaun Holmes dunked over some people and reminded a handful of fans why they've gotten way too excited about him at various points earlier in the year. Good times were had by all.
Games like last night's also just remind you how marginal the difference between winning and losing is. As they've been wont to do forever, the Sixers blew their considerable lead to the Wizards late in this one, which would've undoubtedly resulted in a tragic loss in years past. But these days, the leads are a little bigger going into the Sixers' fourth-quarter tailspins, and their defense is just a little tighter on critical possessions, and that's the difference between losing on a Bradley Beal buzzer-beater and hitting just enough free throws to squeak out a mildly secure 120-112 victory.
Anyway, after an impossibly discouraging week of Sixers happenings, it turns out some actual Sixers basketball is just what we needed. Hopefully their level of play will continue to get better as news of their off-court developments invariably keeps getting worse .