Skip Bayless claims that it is painful to watch Ben Simmons shoot free throws after being intentionally fouled and wants him to shoot 70%.
The Wizards-Sixers game from last night went down to the wire in a way that saw two players brick two separate types of shots on back-to-back possessions. Russell Westbrook shot an abysmal 3-19 from the filed in Game 4 by chucking up his patented pull-up mid rangers but he did make up for it with a Playoff career high of 21 rebounds, 14 assists, and going 13-16 from the free throw line.
The second player in this ‘brick-fest’ was Ben Simmons who has not been able to hit a free throw with any semblance of consistency in the 4 games he’s played in the Playoffs this season. He is currently shooting an abysmal 25% from the charity stripe on the series with a slight improvement in Game 4 as he shot 5-11 on the night.
Teams have adopted a ‘Shaquille O’Neal’ type approach to dealing with Ben Simmons late in games as they continually hack him to get him to the free throw line. Skip Bayless took notice of this and chimed in on Twitter.
Ben Simmons is not impressing Skip Bayless with his free throw shooting numbers.
For all of the upside Ben Simmons brings on the defensive end of the floor and as a facilitator, he does have the ultimate downside of not being a shooting threat. This has translated all across the court for the All-Star, including his free throws. Bayless took to Twitter to ask Simmons to shoot at least 70% from the charity stripe.
Painful to watch Ben Simmons missing free throws after being intentionally fouled. Doc can’t take him out – he’s a star, a defensive force. Doc would risk losing him psychologically. But Ben eventually must learn how to make 70% of his FTs under pressure. Or get subbed.
— Skip Bayless (@RealSkipBayless) June 1, 2021
The Undisputed host is right on this one as crunch time in the Playoffs will usually resort to teams playing the foul game. With Ben Simmons much more likely to make 1 of 2 free throws or even go 0 for 2, the opposing team gets to come down the floor and inch a step closer to winning the game.
Bringing up Simmons’s faults without talking about what he brings to the table in terms of being perhaps the best perimeter defender in the league would be unfair to him. It’s quite impossible to think about not having Ben late in games as he’s a menace to deal with on the defensive end of the floor. Everything from his lateral quickness to his hands in passing lanes, Simmons is living up to his DPOY candidacy.