Ben Simmons says he's 'ready to go'; Joel Embiid shooting for opener

Ben Simmons said Monday at the Philadelphia 76ers' media day that his foot is "100 percent" and he is ready to become a leader this season.

Simmons missed last season with a broken right foot but said Monday he's "ready to go" with no restrictions. He said the year off "was frustrating to start, but it was a great opportunity for me to learn."

"One hundred percent, cleared to play and I've just been working out, playing five-on-five pickup. So just back to where I was before and a whole lot better now," he said.

Teammate Joel Embiid also talked about his health status as he rehabs from March surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee. He said he has had two to three scans since the surgery and "everything looks perfect." He said he is shooting to be back for the 76ers' first game of the regular season.

Simmons was asked about not being ranked highly by his fellow rookies in the annual NBA rookie survey. He vowed by the end of the year that "they'll remember" who he is.

"I came to the States when I was 15 and nobody knew who I was, so I feel like I'm kind of back at the stage and I got to prove myself again, which is fine. I'm looking forward to that part," he said.

Embiid also addressed his doubters, saying Monday that his critics fuel him.

"I've seen what everybody's said on Twitter. It doesn't bother me. I love it, I love critics and it just makes me better. I love seeing people say I can't do this and I'm going to go out there and work on it and come back the next game or whenever I can and show that I can do this," he said.

76ers general manager Bryan Colangelo said Simmons "has all the tools to be a great player in this game."

"Just playing basketball is going to be a success for Ben Simmons and for us," he said.

Coach Ben Brown has said he plans to use Simmons at point guard this season, and Simmons said Monday he is embracing the role.

"It feels normal to me," Simmons said of playing point guard. "He's the first coach to finally give me the opportunity. He obviously sees something in me. I believe in myself and I believe I can do it. There's not many people who can really guard me off the dribble, the full length of the court. It's going to be a mismatch problem a lot of the time."

He said he has formed a friendship with this year's No. 1 pickMarkelle Fultz, calling him a "great player a good friend."

"Our chemistry is getting better and better every day on and off the court, so I think that's going to play a big role with this team's success," he said.

Colangelo said that having Fultz and Simmons "in the same boat" this season is "not dissimilar to what we had last year."

"Multiple candidates for Rookie of the Year, finding a balance to all of that. I've said it before, it's almost unfair to load up a coach with those kind of issues, but hopefully everyone will look at this as an opportunity to put team first and sacrifice what's required to make us a better basketball team," he said.

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Simmons says he's ready to go
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Ben Simmons says his foot is 100% as he gets ready for his first full season with the 76ers.
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