Warriors’ Lacob fined $50K for Simmons remarks

    Nick Friedell is the Chicago Bulls beat reporter for ESPN Chicago. Friedell is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and joined ESPNChicago.com for its launch in April 2009.

Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob has been fined $50,000 for violating the NBA’s anti-tampering rule, the league announced Wednesday.

Lacob’s fine came after he cast doubt during a recent interview with the San Francisco Chronicle that the Warriors would be interested in acquiring disgruntled Philadelphia 76ers star Ben Simmons.

“In some ways, it doesn’t really fit what we’re doing,” Lacob told the Chronicle. “He makes a lot of money. And, can he finish games? I don’t know,” Lacob said. “He’s very talented. The problem is: We have Draymond. Draymond and him are very similar in the sense that neither one really shoots and they do a lot of the playmaking. That’s one issue. The salary structure is another.”

Simmons, 25, intends to never play another game for the franchise, sources told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski on Tuesday. As the speculation surrounding Simmons’ future continues, the Warriors continue to pop up as a possible landing spot, but Lacob’s comments are likely to slow that chatter in league circles.

76ers coach Doc Rivers is hoping to change Simmons’ mind.

“Well, I hope we can change that thought,” Rivers said on ESPN’s Keyshawn, JWill, and Max on Wednesday morning. “That’s part of our job.”

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