Kendrick Perkins calls out the ESPN jury for ranking Ben Simmons above Russell Westbrook. The former NBA champion seems livid about the disrespect shown to Westbrook.
Sports broadcasting giant ESPN, has been compiling a top 100 NBA players list for the upcoming 2021-22 season. The sports network has been releasing its ranking in clusters from backwards. Recently, there was a lot of controversy surrounding Russell Westbrook’s ranking.
During an appearance on ESPN’s The Jump, Kendrick Perkins didn’t hesitate to call out his colleagues for ranking Simmons higher than Westbrook. Big Perk seemed flabbergasted at even the thought of having a former MVP being placed below Simmons.
Russell Westbrook surpassed Oscar Robertson as the all-time leader in triple-double during the 2020-21 season. On the other hand, Simmons’ performance in the playoffs was no secret. It would not be wrong to say that Simmons cost his team a spot in the conference finals.
While Westbrook was ranked 29th, Simmons was 28 on the list. When asked about Brodie’s ranking, former OKC teammate Perkins seemed livid.
Kendrick Perkins blasts ESPN for ranking Ben Simmons above Russell Westbrook
One of the most misinterpreted players in the league, Westbrook is often overlooked for the efforts he put into his game. The former MVP would show up every day at work without any excuses, something contrary to the league’s new concept of load management.
Former NBA champion Kendrick Perkins reminded everyone about the greatness of Westbrook while talking about this recently:
“I wanna know who the hell are doing these rankings? How could you watch last season and watch what Russell Westbrook did when the Washington Wizards were about 1500 games below 500 and Russell Westbrook averaging another triple-double, getting them to the postseason and then you have the audacity of putting Ben Simmons ahead of Russell Westbrook.”
“This man keeps getting disrespected. And that’s no disrespect to Ben Simmons. I think he’s a great player. He just wasn’t good last year and Russell Westbrook was.”
Earlier this year, NBA legend Oscar Robertson even put Westbrook in the MVP conversation for what he had achieved. The 9x All-Star has averaged a triple-double in the last 3 of his 4 seasons.
Though rankings can be extremely subjective, ESPN seems to have got it completely wrong in this case.