76ers Owners, Players Criticized For Too-Close Relationship
The 76ers' "most visible limited partner," Fanatics Founder & Exec Chair Michael Rubin, posted an Instagram image of himself from his Super Bowl suite with 76ers co-Owners Josh Harris and David Blitzer, as well as C Joel Embiid, F Ben Simmons and F Tobias Harris, which "exposed the overarching problem with this underachieving" team, according to Marcus Hayes of the PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER. The night after the Super Bowl, the Sixers "got blown out" by the Heat, looking "disengaged, uninterested, dysfunctional." It was their third loss in a row, and it "might have brought coach Brett Brown to the brink of termination." Hayes: "If the players party with the owners then, when the players are unhappy with the coach, the owners will have their backs." Sources said that Embiid and Rubin have "become very close." Hayes notes several Sixers "cast Rubin as a counselor and confidant" for Embiid. Hayes: "In today's world of professional sports, it's naïve to think that owners should not have relationships with their chief investments." The Sixers do this "far too much." It "breeds insubordination." The franchise has "lacked a competent, autonomous leader at any level -- in the front office, among the owners, or in the locker room" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 2/6).