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Simmons saddened NLEX stint had to end early, but family comes first

ANTIPOLO – Jonathon Simmons admitted that he’s saddened to be leaving NLEX given the success they’ve had in the ongoing PBA Governors’ Cup.

But it was a decision he made not only for himself.

“Not too much of a regret. Kinda sad, though, you know. But [there’s] a lot of money on the table, and I’m a family guy,” said the former NBA cager.

Simmons played his final game as a Road Warrior on Saturday night, leading his side to a 98-94 escape of Phoenix Super LPG at the Ynares Center here.

On Monday, he’ll be flying out to China and go back to play for Shanxi in the CBA as he accepted the ball club’s much more lucrative offer.

Everyone from NLEX would’ve wanted him to stay, but understands why he chose to return to the country he’s been playing in since 2021.

Thus, his gratitude to the team for their support.2023-PBA-Governors-Cup-NLEX-vs-Phoenix-Jonathon-Simmons Simmons saddened NLEX stint had to end early, but family comes first Basketball News PBA  - philippine sports news

“It’s more about providing for my family at this point. I’m 33, so I have a short window left to play basketball.” said the cager from Houston, Texas.

“I’m just kinda thinking about that. And Coach and the whole organization has been very understanding since the first time we addressed this.”

So Simmons repaid their understanding the best way he can: winning all four games he had with the MVP Group-owned franchise.

Saturday night alone saw him pour 38 points — 17 of which he made in the third — and seven rebounds, along with five assists and two steals.

“Couldn’t ask for a better opportunity,” said Simmons. “[It’s] Unfortunate that I have to leave but it was all good, all A-plus for me.

“I wouldn’t hesitate to come back and play for Coach Frankie.”

If there’s one thing that he really regrets the most, it is the missed opportunity to play against reigning Governors’ Cup kings Barangay Ginebra.

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Simmons admitted that he actually sought if he can still extend his PBA stint for at least a day to play the crowd darlings, but needed to go ASAP.

“I tried pushing it,” he said.

“But, yea. I’ll get ’em one day.”

The second game of each PBA gameday is live-streamed on SMART Sports.

Written By

Oftentimes on the sidelines. Forever a student of the game. Morayta-bred.

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