Two incredible talents have not played a singles game this season for their respective teams, and no, it is not as a result of injuries. Kyrie Irving and Ben Simmons are yet to suit up for their teams even since the preseason.
Simmons had a rough 2021 playoffs, and the Philadelphia 76ers fans were beyond upset. Ben did not feel like he had enough support from the organization and made up his mind to leave.
Throughout the offseason, the Sixers attempted to move Simmons, but the demands were too much, especially for a player who was not going to be much help offensively. No franchise was willing to give up crucial pieces for Simmons.
The Sixers are willing to have Simmons back, but the All-Star guard is not ready to play for the team. According to Ben, he is not mentally ready despite help from the team's medical specialist.
For the Brooklyn Nets star, he refused to take the covid-19 vaccine ahead of the season. Although there are players that are competing without taking the vaccine, New York City's mandate requires him to take the vaccine to be allowed into the indoor arena.
There was a chance for Kyrie to still feature for the Nets on the road, but the organization was not interested in having him on the patrol on a part-time basis.
With both players being unavailable due to their decisions, they have be been fined for every game they have missed so far.
According to Spotrac, Simmons has lost a total of $7,433,713 for missing 16 regular-season games and 4 preseason games. Kyrie's total stands at $5,717,715 for 13 regular-season games and 2 preseason games.
There has been chatter about a potential trade for Ben Simmons, and teams like the Los Angeles Lakers and the New York Knicks. In the case of Irving, there is a chance that he might return to the fold for the Nets.
Kyrie also released a video of him wearing a basketball shoe, which is sort of validation to the rumors. It was also reported that he has increased communication with Kevin Durant, and the conversation revolves around basketball.
For Simmons, it will take a trade for him to play this season, while Kyrie could play if New York city changes their covid-19 mandate or if the organization was willing to take him on a part-time basis. A final option will be if he takes the covid-19 vaccine. Uncle Drew has reportedly expressed an interest to take a plant-based version of the vaccine.