Apr 15, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons (25) reacts to the crowd after a score against the Brooklyn Nets during the first quarter in game two of the first round of the 2019 NBA Playoffs at Wells Fargo Center.

Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports

Ben Simmons says casino singled him out by race

August 06, 2019 - 9:11 am

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — A 76ers star is implying that racism is the reason he and friends were given a hard time getting into a casino early Monday morning. The Crown Casino in Melbourne, Australia, has tried to defend its employees' actions, but it seems Ben Simmons isn't ready to accept the explanation.

Simmons signed a $170 million contract extension with the 76ers, announced earlier this month. With that much cash coming in, he can afford a couple trips to the casino. Early Monday morning, Simmons posted a video to his Instagram account of him with three friends at the Melbourne casino. In the video, Simmons claims only one person in the group was allowed in — and that friend also happened to be the only white man in the group.

"And they didn't let me in, or him ... or this guy. Wow," he said.

The video has been removed from his Instagram, but someone uploaded it to YouTube.

In a statement, the Crown disputes Simmons' claim that the group was denied entry, saying security must ask for identification from anyone who looks to be under the age of 25. The statement goes on to say that the group was allowed in after they all provided identification.

Simmons responded on Twitter on Tuesday morning, saying "my friends and I felt personally singled out, no one likes to feel like this. I am very passionate about equality and I will always speak up even if it means having uncomfortable conversations."