The former number one draft pick, Ben Simmons, has just been offered a 5-year, $170 million max contract with the Philadelphia 76ers despite many critics believing this may be a mistake.

The 76ers young star has been criticized by many for specific shooting issues which have affected the big man from reaching his full potential. There’s certainly a lot to look forward to in the future of Simmons’ career but there’s also some debate on whether the Sixers should have given him a full max contract this early in his career.

ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith is under the belief that Ben Simmons still deserves a max contract despite all of the issues he has with the shooting. When responding to Max Kellerman saying that the big man isn’t worth a max contract on ESPN’s First Take, Smith disagreed.

“I can say he is,” said Smith. “I have a problem with his ability to shoot, period. But nothing else, he defends, his long, his footwork, his passing, and ball-handling skills, no he’s not Magic, he’s not LeBron or anything like that but the brother is something special, at 6’10 and without a shot, this is what he been able to do.”

Smith acknowledged how poor his shooting has been but made it clear that everything else about his game is extremely good which is why he believes the Sixers have made the right call.

Simmons is still very young and has a lot more to prove, ever since he entered the league, there’s been many comparisons to four-time MVP, LeBron James. If the Sixers big man can improve his shooting over the next couple of seasons then he may be what leads the franchise to their next championship.

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