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As the Ben Simmons drama unfolded in Philadelphia, Sixers veteran guard Shake Milton had another opportunity on his hands to become the team's starting point guard once again. During the 2019-2020 season, Milton took over point guard duties as Ben Simmons dealt with a notable back injury.

Milton emerged and eventually won the starting point guard position for the rest of the year as the 76ers experimented playing Simmons at power forward. However, after getting rid of Brett Brown and hiring Doc Rivers, Milton found himself out of the starting lineup and instead was running the point off the bench.

Throughout the 2020-2021 season, Milton switched back and forth from point guard and shooting guard and even found himself out of the rotation at times. Considering he was inconsistent towards the end of last season as Tyrese Maxey emerged, Milton's role for the upcoming season was unknown.

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With Simmons holding out, Doc Rivers offered Milton and Maxey an opportunity to battle it out for the starting point guard position this season as long as Simmons is off the floor. Unfortunately, Milton's opportunity faded away as he suffered a sprained ankle nearly two weeks ago.

After going down with a setback, Milton missed the final two preseason games. Although he's been able to get some limited work done during practice, it became clear that Milton wasn't quite close to returning to the court.

"I don't know what his status is," said Sixers head coach Doc Rivers earlier this week in regards to Milton. "I know he's out. Shake is nowhere near playing yet. He'll be out for a while." As expected, Milton is ruled out for Philly's regular-season opener on Wednesday night against the New Orleans Pelicans. 

With Milton out and Ben Simmons suspended for a game, Tyrese Maxey will more than likely start for the 76ers in New Orleans. Considering the Sixers are down three ball-handlers as the two-way guard Grant Riller is also recovering from an injury, the Sixers will more than likely look to Isaiah Joe and Furkan Korkmaz to handle backup ball-handler duties on Wednesday night.

Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him for live updates on Twitter: @JGrasso_.