“If there’s anyone who’s comfortable being uncomfortable it’s Daryl Morey.” One thing everyone is talking about is the Philly-Simmons standoff is that Daryl Morey is the GM least likely to flinch. His track record of underestimating chemistry and being okay with awkward situations makes Morey the perfect candidate not to give in to a superstar forcing his exit (and dictating words while doing so).
Morey’s pressure points
That’s absolutely true, but all of these comments implied that people were betting on Morey to win the clash, passing him off as the favorite. In short, two factors could make Morey give way. Either his official bosses, the owners of the 76ers, or his de facto boss, team superstar Joel Embiid, say they are tired and exhausted by the drama. If the 76ers general manager fails to convince them at this point, he may have to agree to a deal for less than a superstar Morey expected. So the game for Camp Simmons is to drag this out and keep it in the public eye – the patience of Josh Harris and Joel Embiid are the weak spots.
What has remained unexplored is Camp Simmons’ appetite for being uncomfortable, and he’s bigger than you might think. The main form of pressure exerted by the Sixers is payroll deduction. As Basketball news covered A few days ago, the 76ers failed to pay Simmons the $ 8.25 million he was supposed to receive on Oct. 1 and put it in an escrow account. Klutch will certainly challenge this move, but while it’s being resolved, Simmons isn’t getting any money from the 76ers. While Morey needs to make sure Harris and Embiid are cool when they get the 100th Simmons question from the media, Rich Paul needs to do the same with Simmons when he checks his bank account.
The master of resistance
This is where Mark Termini comes in. In 2013, Termini started working with Rich Paul and was called the mastermind behind their innovative contract negotiations, such as LeBron’s short contracts with Cleveland or the fact that most of Klutch’s clients receive a large chunk of their wages at advance. His background has greatly influenced the way Klutch does business, and the thing that Termini is most famous for is crucial when it comes to Simmons’ situation.
In 1992, Termini represented Jim Jackson, who was selected 4th in the draft by the Dallas Mavericks. The rookies negotiated their contract at the time, and Jackson wasn’t happy with the Mavs’ offer, so he decided to hold on. What happened was the longest resistance in NBA history – Jackson missed 54 games that season. Meanwhile, the Mavs lobbied by telling Jackson that he was ruining his value and that he would not be paid for the games he missed. Sounds familiar?
But Termini assured his client that he would give him his money, and he succeeded. Jackson signed a six-year, $ 20 million contract, including a full salary for the 92/93 season, even though he only played 28 games. The hold-out did not affect his client’s income at all. In fact, it was the most lucrative contract for a rookie goalie at the time. Termini also managed a blockage with a Klutch customer. You probably forgot that Tristan Thompson held his ground before he got the Cavs’ $ 82 million.
So while the 76ers have the only GM who is likely to hang on, Rich Paul has learned from the NBA’s ultimate resistance expert (Termini left Klutch in 2020). This allows Paul to tell Simmons that he should call the Sixers bluff and assure him that he will get all of his money when the situation is resolved.
It might be a long time before we see Ben Simmons on an NBA pitch, but it sure won’t be boring.