Ben Simmons is one of the league's best players, despite the glaring flaws in his game. He can facilitate for shooters, defend all positions at a high level, and his finishing at the rim is fairly solid. Simmons is one of the most athletic players in the league as well, and it is easy to see his appeal. However, he did not perform that well in the playoffs from a scoring standpoint, leading many to question his ability. His lack of a jump shot and poor free-throw shooting were both problems for the 76ers during the playoffs as well.
While Simmons isn't the best scorer, Stephen A. Smith believes that could change if Ben Simmons improved his free throw shooting, A recent article by Taylor Writh of NBC Sports has revealed Stephen A. Smith believes that Simmons could easily average 23-25 PPG if he just improved his free throw shooting to around 75-80%.
If you looked at Ben Simmons and realized that if he could shoot free throws in the 75-80% range, he would easily be a 23-to-25 point-per-game scorer. Without a jump shot, that’s how good he is.
A lot of people have suggested that Ben Simmons needs to start shooting jump shots, but it looks as if Smith suggests an easier fix. Ben Simmons averaged a career-high 16.9 PPG during the 2018-19 season while shooting 60% from the line. It is possible that if he were to take more shot attempts while also making his free throws, that he would reach the benchmark that Stephen A. Smith set out without a jumper. However, it is also possible that Ben Simmons will never become an elite shooter from the line: a lot of players that struggle with free throws do that for their entire career.
Ben Simmons is still an All-Star caliber player, and there's no one that can argue about how effective he is on defense. However, for him to take the next step, he needs to elevate his scoring, and perhaps he'll do so next season.