Ben Simmons is without question one of the best young players in the NBA. But, the 76ers forward has a glaring issue in his game – he can’t shoot. L.A. Lakers great Kobe Bryant shared some wisdom for the 21-year-old Aussie: Rebuild your jump shot.
“Just aesthetically I would say build that thing anew (laughs). I don’t think the game came down to that though. I think on a fundamental level, being able to get open off the ball is what did them in. They just tried to pop free for the ball, and in that situation you can’t do that. You got to put your body on your defender, hold them off and now you got to pop for the ball. Those are just basic, fundamental things, but those little fundamental things are what cost teams playoff series’ and eventual championships. So it’s those little fundamental things that you’ve really got to focus on from Day 1 in training camp, because if you lose sight of that it comes back to haunt you.”
Simmons – who didn’t hit a single three-pointer all season and barely shot above 50 percent from the three throw line – would be wise to tweak his jumper. However, considering how the 76ers handle Markelle Fultz and his rebuilt jump shot, I’d be wary if I was Simmons.
Adding a jumper would take Simmons from great to really damn great. Still, I’d be apprehensive about changing such an integral part of Simmons game – even the intentions are good. I believe Simmons can thrive in today’s NBA without a jumper – which is a crazy statement to make. If he does add one, the rest of the NBA is screwed.
As long as it doesn’t impact Simmons all-around game, take Kobe’s advice.