Report: Nets’ Simmons credited year of service for holdout season

Report: Nets' Simmons credited year of service for holdout season

Brooklyn Nets point forward Ben Simmons received credit for a year of service for the 2021-22 season when he held out from the Philadelphia 76ers and was traded to the Nets, sources told ESPN’s Zach Lowe.

Years of service affect the scale of maximum contracts players are eligible for, as well as other benefits. Simmons now has seven official years of NBA service.

Officials from several teams argued that Simmons shouldn’t receive credit for the season, Lowe reports.

His credit is reportedly intended as a standalone decision rather than setting a precedent for future cases.

Simmons requested a trade from the 76ers in the 2021 offseason. He arrived at training camp ahead of the 2021-22 campaign but didn’t fully participate or play in regular-season games, citing mental health issues.

The three-time All-Star continued to sit out after getting dealt to the Nets due to knee and back issues before having back surgery in April 2022.

Brooklyn paid Simmons’ salary for the part of the season he was on the team. However, the 76ers withheld about $20 million of his pay, arguing he breached his contract by refusing to play.

Simmons and the National Basketball Players Association filed a grievance against the Sixers. The sides settled in August 2022, allowing Simmons to recoup part of his salary, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported.

Star James Harden currently remains with Philadelphia despite recently requesting a trade. If Harden holds out of training camp for the upcoming season, different rules will apply to him because he’s in the final year of his contract, sources told Lowe.

A clause in the collective bargaining agreement prevents players from entering free agency or signing with professional teams outside of the NBA if they’re deemed to have violated their contract by refusing to play, per Lowe.

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