Photo: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Dwight Howard has repeatedly defended disgruntled Sixers’ All-Star Ben Simmons throughout the season. The Los Angeles Lakers veteran played alongside Simmons last season.

In a recent interview on GQ Magazine, Howard tried to get people to understand the importance of mental health, and said this about the Simmons situation:

“It’s difficult to talk about mental health for a lot of people. You don’t want everybody in your business. On the other end, if you talk about this kind of stuff, it’s gonna bring a lot of attention, and it’s not always good.

Everybody doesn’t have the right intentions and you have to watch what you say and do in the public eye. I know for him: that was a real tough situation because he’s dealing with a lot at home and with his family.

He’s done the best job he can. I don’t think the Philly fans have really treated him fairly throughout this whole situation based off what they heard in the media.

They feel like he’s obligated to them. But what if this was your son or daughter or one of your friends dealing with what Ben’s dealing with? How would you handle it? How would you feel?” Howard said.

The Simmons situation is a sad one to see it play out the way it has. Simmons hasn’t played basketball in months, while the team is not trying to help the disgruntled player and resolve the situation.

The Sixers are in the middle of the pack regarding their record, ending a nine-game road trip with a 2-7 record, playing most of the games without Joel Embiid, Tobias Harris and, of course, Simmons.