Ben Simmons has no future with the Philadelphia 76ers, according to reports on Tuesday, putting the team in a very tricky position.
The 76ers were said to be in talks to trade Simmons for James Harden last season, but the Brooklyn Nets swooped in to do a deal with the Houston Rockets instead.
Simmons instead remained in Philly but again failed to impress as their playoff run ended with defeat to the Atlanta Hawks in the Eastern Conference semi-finals.
The point forward is an outstanding defender, making the All-Defensive First Team in each of the past two years, but his work on the other end of the floor has been a source of constant criticism.
In four seasons with the Sixers, Simmons has averaged 15.9 points per game in the regular season, yet he has attempted only 34 shots from three-point range and made just 59.7 per cent from the foul line.
The first overall pick in 2016, Simmons still has admirers around the league but appears to be gambling someone will make a big offer.
ESPN said Simmons will not report for training camp next week and does not plan to play for the 76ers again, having communicated this message to the team last month.
But the 76ers have not yet found an attractive trade, and the issue for both parties is Simmons' stock has never been lower.
Not only does the player's stance give his team less leverage, but he is coming off a woeful postseason showing that could understandably see suitors have second thoughts.
Across Games 5, 6 and 7 against the Hawks, Simmons averaged 6.3 points from 4.7 field goal attempts.
His 34.2 per cent free-throw shooting throughout the playoffs was by far the worst rate of any player with 10 attempts or more, while he took just one shot in clutch situations.
The 76ers are likely to have to lower their expectations considerably in the trade market, as they attempt to help Joel Embiid heading into 2021-22.