SCOTT: The Potential of Ben Simmons

<p>Shoot some hoops on our Basketball Court!</p>

Shoot some hoops on our Basketball Court!

Ben Simmons is the definition of a generational talent.

The 6’11 point guard is entering his seventh year in the NBA with a lot to prove to all the doubters and haters. Simmons is coming off a season where he did not play any game due to a recurring back injury and a holdout with the main focus on his mental health.

This has caused members of the media to slash Simmons’ reputation with the thought that he can never come back and overcome the dreadful adversity from his time with the Philadelphia 76ers. Simmons has built up the perception that he is one of the worst shooters in the league.

Now do not get me wrong, I am not stupid; I am well aware of the fact that Ben Simmons is a below-average three-point shooter with a three-point percentage of 14.7 percent. I am also well aware that the majority of Ben Simmons’ career points are from the restricted area/paint where he is effective 61.9 percent of the time.

The whole point I want to make is a pretty big “If”, a hypothetical that is so huge that it could change the NBA for so many years it is crazy. My whole take is that, if Ben Simmons developed a jump shot for the perimeter and the mid-range, then he would be a perennial all-star and a bonafide MVP candidate each and every year.

Just think about it; other than the low-performing jump shot, Simmons is one of the most complete players in the NBA and that is a fact. He has the passing ability that emulates Magic Johnson and Steve Nash, to the IQ level to comparisons of Chris Paul and Tim Duncan, and last but not least the defensive prowess that reminds us of greats such as Scottie Pippen and David Robinson.

The athleticism of Ben Simmons is astonishing, to say the least. Standing at 6’11 and 240 pounds, Simmons ranks amongst the fastest players in the NBA. This helps Simmons run the offense while moving in transition on the fastbreak. 

Being a pest on the defensive end that he then turns into an offensive orchestrator can help and improve any NBA team, especially in today’s league. Simmons needs the respect his potential rightfully deserves.

In my opinion, right along with Russell Westbrook and Nikola Jokic, Ben Simmons is a walking triple-double. The man can expand on all averages with points, rebounds, and assists. 

Simmons has never had a role on a team where he is the number-one option at all times. For the first five years of his career, Simmons played in Philadelphia where his role changed quickly and more often than any other professional prospect.

For the most part, Simmons was the second option to perennial MVP candidate turned rival Joel Embiid. Simmons then dropped to the third option when the Sixers decided to forget the so-called “process” and make moves to acquire All-Star forward Jimmy Butler. Some may even say the efforts of Tobias Harris turned Simmons into a fourth option, leaving him out of any team’s “Big Three” plans.

I feel that if Simmons develops that jump shot to where he can be at least a proficient scorer then of course he will undoubtedly be recognized as an MVP candidate. That is his only burden. Once that gets down-packed he will be the complete package and prototype of the perfect player. 

There really is no ceiling when it comes to Simmons. You can't compare him to just one player, so, if he became 100% then the sky's the limit and his peak would be unreachable to any other player.

Dominant inside scorer, pick-and-roll maestro, basketball genius and the man can guard the one through five position-wise. What more do the people want from him other than a jump shot?

Ben Simmons is truly on the journey of becoming the next set of NBA stars that will be the idols for the next generation just like how we look at Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant and Lebron James. 

All he has to do is get those shooting reps in and continue to live in the gym.

Contact Calvin Scott with comments at calvin.scott@bsu.edu or on Twitter @CalvinAJScott.

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