Simmons: I thought Philly crowd would be louder in my return
"I thought it was going to be louder," Simmons said about the boos he received from fans before and during the game, per SNY.
The former 76ers star made his first appearance in Philadelphia since Brooklyn acquired him last February in a package that sent James Harden the other way. Simmons finished with 11 points, 11 assists, and seven rebounds in the loss.
The Nets visited Philadelphia in March, but Simmons didn't suit up as he recovered from a lingering back injury.
Fans in Philadelphia booed Simmons during his pregame introduction and whenever he touched the ball throughout the contest. They also cheered particularly loudly when Simmons missed two free throws in the third quarter. However, the team is partnered with Chick-fil-A to give out free nuggets to fans when an opposing player misses back-to-back free throws in the second half.
The Nets guard said postgame that not all fans in Philadelphia were staunchly against him. He even signed autographs before the contest for some supporters who continue to root for him.
"It was nice to have support in Philadelphia still, he said. "Lifelong fans, they do support me, so that was really cool to see. ... I think I did some things in Philadelphia that can be respected. I don't think we (only) had bad times."
The 2016 No. 1 pick made three All-Star appearances and was named to the All-Defensive first team twice during his four campaigns with the 76ers. He sat out the beginning of last season with Philadelphia citing mental health struggles and then sustained a back injury, which forced him to miss the rest of the campaign.