We all know Ben Simmons has been pretty bad from the line in this year’s playoffs. But this stat puts it in a whole new perspective.
I grew up on a staple of teams trying Hack-a-Shaq with varying degrees of success. They did it in both the regular season and the playoffs, and Shaq would have to deal with countless trips to the line. Sometimes, when it worked, it was a ghastly sight to see.
Ben Simmons has been a whole lot worse than Shaq ever was, though. Anybody who’s watched both of them can spot an eery similarity between their attitudes at the line as well.
Ben seems to be in his head so much at the line that it’s physically repulsive to try and watch him shoot. And it seems that the statistics back up whatever impression that NBA fans have formed about him so far.
Ben Simmons has missed 45 free throws – more than twice the Brooklyn Nets
An NBA redditor took the time out to highlight Simmons’ free throw woes in this year’s playoffs with a statistical approach. He went to Simmons’ game logs and found that the Sixers star has shot 67 free throws through 10 playoff games. But Ben has missed 45 of those attempts.
The Brooklyn Nets, meanwhile, have also played 10 playoff games ahead of tipoff at Fiserv Forum today. They’ve only missed 22 free throws as a team in those games.
The truly unbelievable part of this stat is that Simmons barely ever drives against a set defense. The vast majority of his free throw attempts have been proper hacks by defenders.
They simply know that Simmons is going to give up at least a point at the free throw line most times. Simmons has already set a record for most free throw misses by a guard in a single season of playoffs.
Doc Rivers said it best with regards to Simmons’ free throw woes – as long as he makes them, he gets to stay late in games. If he can’t make them, he’s headed out to the bench, and in my mind, that would be eminently deserved.
The Sixers really thought they had 2 superstars on their roster. Simmons is proving with every game that they only have 1 superstar and a Ben Simmons instead.