We'll see. Exaggerating slightly, and I certainly don't think they have to finish in fifth place. But even with Ben they weren't sure to finish ahead of the Bucks and Nets this year, so it only takes a couple of more teams putting it together to put the Sixers in the second tier of playoff teams. And they were a sixth-place team in 2020 (with some very different pieces, but also Ben injured a lot).
If you're right, and if Morey agrees with you, they can play this game with Ben until at least Christmas, if not February. But even just a few extra losses in October and the pressure will be on to get this over with. And like Joel says, they are not a better team without him - but especially not without any kind of trade return for him.