When Ben Simmons won the Rookie of the Year award last season, it demonstrated just how truly talented he was. He beat out guys like Donovan Mitchell and Jayson Tatum, who both made pretty compelling cases themselves.
Interestingly enough, Simmons would argue that the campaign for ROTY wasn’t very much of a race at all.
“It wasn’t a f—ing race,” Simmons said to Eric Waldon of the Salt Lake Tribune. “Did you see the votes?”
He makes a point as far as the votes are concerned. He received 90 out of 101 first-place votes for the award after averaging 15.8 points, 8.1 rebounds and 8.2 assists for a 52-win Philly team. But to say it wasn’t a race at all? That’s quite the statement.
For right now, he’s backing up those bold words well enough, leading his Sixers squad to elite status in the East, with his latest performance including a triple-double (his 17th in two seasons) over a 114-97 win over Donovan Mitchell’s Jazz.
It was a statement win indeed, but perhaps not the kind of statement Simmons needs to be focused on right now.
With virtually no improvement on what has looked to be a toxic jump-shot, his game will continue to be limited. And while there’s still plenty of time to add it to his arsenal, many are starting to wonder if it’s something he is capable of adding at all. Only time will tell.