NBA legend Kobe Bryant was one of the first few people to speak about Ben Simmons’ inability to make a jump shot.
Simmons has been making the headlines recently for all the wrong reasons. The former rookie of the year had a rather terrible run in the 2021 NBA Playoffs. One of the major reasons being his poor shooting.
The Philadephia 76ers had a great regular season, clinching the first seed in the eastern conference. However, their semi-final elimination to a relatively inexperienced Atlanta Hawks stunned everyone.
Simmons was a major cause for the sudden collapse of the 76ers in the semi-finals. The 3x NBA All-Star didn’t make a single 3-point attempt during the series and was a dismal 33.3% from the free-throw line.
The 76ers’ point guard’s inability to make free throws was heavily exploited in the playoffs by opposing teams, who employed the Hack-A-Ben-Simmons. The plan behind this concept was to intentionally foul Simmons during the clutch moments of the match, sending him to the free-throw line.
The late Kobe Bryant was quick to identify Simmons’ this area of weakness. The mamba even stressed upon the fact that the 76er point guard still had major potential to explore.
“Ben Simmons would regret not working on his jump shot” – Kobe Bryant in 2019
Simmons’ ability to dominate the game despite having no shooting game is impeccable. The 76ers point guard can play both ends of the floor and has great play-making skills.
“I said: ‘What the … hold up, I gotta go.’”
NBA legend Kobe Bryant has hailed Melbourne’s major events, with one particular experience a clear highlight.https://t.co/U2Cm2F6A1m
— Herald Sun (@theheraldsun) March 7, 2019
The late Kobe Bryant spoke about Simmons’ abilities as a player in detail during 2019,
“He’s got to get a jump shot. It sounds stupid and all that but I’m dead ass serious. Because if not, he will regret it when his career is over.’’ said Bryant.
The 5x NBA champion further added,
“Simmons’ ability to dominate NBA games without a reliable jump shot is “astonishing” and also predicts the Melbourne product still has a bright future ahead of him.”
“I think his development will come in shooting obviously. At some point, he’s got to be able to shoot that ball. Jason Kidd, when he came in the league, wasn’t a great shooter, but he worked to the point where he became one of the best three-point shooters we’ve had in our league in history.” said the 2x Finals MVP.
Bryant ended by saying,
“That will be his next progression. That being said, even without that, he’s been able to dominate and take Philadelphia to a place where it hasn’t been in a very long time.”
As per reports, the 76ers have been actively engaging with teams regarding trading Simmons. However, the 25-year old seems to be untraceable if rumors are to be believed, as was last seen at Wimbledon with his girlfriend earlier this month.