Can the Sixers Advance to the Finals With Ben Simmons Unwillingness to Shoot?
Ben Simmons busted out on the scene last year when he made his NBA debut. The Philadelphia Sixers franchise point guard put up great numbers in his rookie campaign. He averaged 15.2 points, 8.2 assists and 8.1 rebounds per game last season. This year, his numbers have stayed pretty much the same, but the Sixers have recently acquired some new talent.
Over the weekend, the Sixers traded for Jimmy Butler, which changed the dynamic for the Sixers. With more talent comes more expectations, and now the Sixers are expected to be one of the major threats in the East with a good shot of making the NBA Finals. But if you’re a Sixers fan, you’d know there’s always an obstacle. That obstacle is Ben Simmons. Or the fact that he is very hesitant to shoot.
Ben Simmons is a great orchestrator and can score within ten feet of the basket, but take him out past that and he will not shoot the ball. Butler is not a spot-up shooter. There will be many times when Butler has the ball and will try to make plays. If he penetrates and drives, where will Simmons be? Butler kicks out the ball to Simmons for an open three-pointer, what happens next? These are concerns because the defense will be ready. NBA defenses are already attached to JJ Redick as it is and are basically daring Ben Simmons to shoot. This video is evidence of that.
Ben Simmons has only attempted 11 three pointers in his career so far and he’s never made one. That is alarming.
In an era that’s predicated on shooting threes, Simmons is going to have to develop an outside shot in order for the Sixers to be a serious threat. More importantly, he is going to have to shoot them. There are a lot of point guards that cannot shoot, but the fact that Simmons won’t even take a shot makes it easier for a defense to defend him. If Simmons were to shoot the three even at a low clip, it would open up the offense for the Sixers a little better.
We are going to see how the Sixers integrate Jimmy Butler into the offense, but as of right now, the Sixers are a driving team that can be easily defended on the perimeter. Simmons is going to have to shoot more in order for the Sixers to make some serious noise in the East. But the question is, will he? We are going to find out as the season progresses.
Thank you for reading.