Philadelphia 76ers point guard Ben Simmons surely is a stats stuffer.
The first pick in the 2016 NBA Draft has averaged 16.7 points, 7.8 rebounds, 8.2 assists, 2.1 steals through 54 games this season.
I discussed Simmons on ESPN Radio recently:
Before the coronavirus pandemic halted play, Ben Simmons inured his back.
Per NBC Sports Philaelphia: Sixers head coach Brett Brown said Simmons hurt his back going up for a rebound at the team’s practice on Feb. 19. On March 11, Simmons himself said he didn’t suffer the nerve impingement in his lower back until Feb. 22, when he was forced to leave the Sixers’ game against the Bucks in the first quarter.
Appearing on a recent episode of the Scoop B Radio Podcast, Yahoo Sports’ Keith Smith joined me and discussed how the coronavirus pandemic gives Simmons, the Brooklyn Nets’ Kevin Durant and others adequate rest time.
Check out notes from our dialogue below:
Keith Smith on how coronavirus pandemic hiatus helps Ben Simmons, Kevin Durant and Giannis Antetokounmpo:
“I think for Simmons, this is great. Because we knew that he was missing the rest of the regular season. The team had already announced that. Maybe he would’ve gotten back for a game, but he was definitely out for the regular season. The back injuries worry me. I’m a guy that grew up in Boston with the Larry Bird Celtics in the 80’s and 90’s, Bird’s career was just cut short by back problems. Those injuries are scary because one day you could be feeling great and the next day you’re out for a month. So that worried me a little but, that time off his feet will have him ready to go, ready to get out there for the start of the playoffs. So I would say he’s pretty good. I’ll to Giannis next. I think Giannis was questionable to come back but they were playing Boston in a game coming up right around when the pandemic shut everything down and he was questionable for that game with that little knee injury so I think that clearly should be cleaned up by the he gets back. Now interesting, I think he was one of several players who said I don’t have a hoop and I haven’t touched a basketball so, it’ll be interesting to see how that goes. As for KD, I think the Nets are doing the right thing. They’re saying even if they do come back, he’s not playing. We’re going to hold him out, we’re going to do the right thing. Now I could maybe see that changing if he says, “Hey I’m ready. I want to do this thing” but you really have to remember it hasn’t even been a full year and usually an Achilles tear, you try to give a guy a full year to go so, I don’t think we’ll see him again this year or the first time this season. I think we’ll wait for him to make his debut at the beginning of next season and I think that’s probably the right thing. It would probably be tough throw him right into the mix of the playoffs when he hasn’t even played in a year.”
The Milwaukee Bucks are sitting in first place in the NBA’s Eastern Conference.
The Brooklyn Nets are in seventh place in the NBA standings and some believe that Durant could resume play after rehabbing his Achilles injury from last year.
Further south in Philadelphia, the Sixers are in sixth place in the NBA’s Eastern Conference.
76ers GM Elton Brand noted via conference call on May 5 that he’s “very optimistic” that Ben Simmons would play if the NBA season resumes and noted Simmons has been cleared the use the Sixers’ practice facility in Camden, New Jersey, for rehab.