Simmons Lacks Agression
Brooklyn Nets Guard Ben Simmons has the support of his teammates to have a big comeback. Simmons played 42 games in the 2022-23 season, averaging all-career lows with 6.9 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 6.1 assists per game.
Simmons teammate and Nets guard Mikal Bridges was on Los Angeles Clippers forward Paul George’s podcast “Podcast P,” talking about how he is behind Simmons this season. “Ben’s my guy,” Bridges said. “I got big confidence, big faith in my boy this year.”
Simmons sat out in late February after a back injury. Bridges believes people didn’t believe Simmons when he said he was hurt. He thinks people think Simmons is pulling a case like he did in Philadelphia when Simmons was allegedly hurt so that he couldn’t play.
Philly vs. Simmons
Simmons was criticized highly by the media and crucified by 76ers fans after his playoff performance in the 2020-21 against the Atlanta Hawks. He played timid throughout this whole series on offense, averaging about six field goal attempts. The most notable thing about Simmons’ play was his disappearance in the fourth quarter. From Games 4-7 he didn’t even attempt a field goal in the fourth quarter.
76ers fans let him have it as they bashed Simmons all over social media for being scary. There was even disruption in the locker room with teammates disgusted at Simmons not wanting to attend practice or games because he was mad at the team for not having his back throughout all the criticism he was receiving.
Simmons’ Passion for Basketball
Bridges said Simmons’ love for the game has always stayed despite the Philly situation. “He always has a ball in hand, even when he’s out he always has a ball in his hand,” Bridges said.
The aggression for Simmons has disappeared since the Atlanta series. Simmons is one of the best passing big men in the NBA, but he is too passive. Simmons isn’t the traditional 6’0 to 6-5 point guard. He’s a 6’10 guard who should be dominating all of the other guards, but he’s too timid to shoot the ball because he’s not a good shooter.
On Instagram, he posts photos of him taking jump shots, but it isn’t translating over to the real games. Him passing up opportunities to score, results in recording about six points a game. Simmons had expectations as the number one pick in the 2016 NBA draft to be the next LeBron James, but he hasn’t met those expectations yet. He is a good player who lacks aggression and that killer instinct. Hopefully he improves this season and makes a big comeback.
Feature Photo: Nathaniel S. Butler/ Getty Images