Ben Simmons is a good basketball player who has faced a lot of criticism after the Philadelphia 76ers lost to the Atlanta Hawks in the playoffs. Some of the flaws in Ben Simmons' game were exposed in that series, such as his lack of a diverse scoring arsenal and his free throw woes. While most people can agree that winning or losing is a team affair, there's no question that Ben Simmons underperforming in the second round was a part of the 76ers demise.
Someone who has experienced criticism frequently during his career is Shaquille O'Neal. While a lot of athletes face unwarranted criticism at times, it seems as though Shaquille O'Neal believes that Ben Simmons deserves the scrutiny that he's received.
In certain cities like Philadelphia, Boston, New York, Miami, Dallas, we know what hard work is. And we know what being fearless is. We can see when a person has a guy 6'1 on him and he drives under the basket to kick it out to another guy when you should have dunked it, that's not what we want. We just want you to work on your game. He''s getting a lot of criticism, and it's warranted. All the great players did... It's part of the business.
One thing my father taught me, he said "OK, a lot of these people are talking about you, but is your criticism warranted?" In this case it is. He needs to say this, "Do I want to be a good player or a great player". Look, you're making $30 million, and you got all your Ferraris and your Lamborghinis. That's a great life, but do you want to be remembered? Do you want to go down in history? Do you want the great Frank Isola to talk about you like you're one of the greatest things since sliced bread? How do you want to be remembered? Once he can look in the mirror and answer that, his problems will go away.
While Ben Simmons may already bring positives on the court, he has the potential to be an even better player he is now if he improves on the offensive end. With his athleticism and playmaking, he could be absolutely elite. It remains to be seen whether Ben Simmons can become the player a lot of people hope he can be, and we'll find out if he is able to improve next season.