NBA : THERE are seemingly no more superlatives to describe the way Ben Simmons’ season has unfolded.
The Australian has put together one of the best rookie years in recent memory, and there’s another impressive statistic to add to his resume.
With a basket in the third quarter, against the Brooklyn Nets, Simmons reached 1200+ points, 600+ rebounds, and 600+ assists on the season, making him the only rookie since Hall of Famer, Oscar Robertson, to achieve the feat.
The Philadelphia 76ers cruised to a 121-95 win over the Nets — their 11th straight victory — with Simmons finishing with 15 points, 12 rebounds, and six assists on the evening.
This came just after 76ers legend and NBA luminary, Julius Erving, praised the 21-year-old, calling him a “once in a lifetime-type player.”
“[He’s a] once in a decade, maybe once in a lifetime-type player,” Erving said, pre-game.
“Able to make everybody better immediately, each and every time down the floor; guys are spotting up or looking to cut, or keying off the triggers that come out of his handling skills.
“He’s got [his] head up, he’s looking at all times; sometimes it looks like he’s got eyes in the back of his head, because he sees and feels one of his guys making a run to the hoop, or spotting up in a certain position(NBA).”
Simmons has been on a tear over the 76ers’ winning streak, averaging a near-triple-double, with his team improving to 47-30 on the season; just a half game back from the Cleveland Cavaliers, who are in the third seed in the Eastern Conference.
The absence of All-Star centre, Joel Embiid, gave Simmons the opening to take over for his team, and he hasn’t disappointed, running a more fast-paced style of offence than we’re used to seeing from Brett Brown’s team.
J.J. Redick finished with a game-high 19 points in the win, while Marco Belinelli continued his impressive play with 17 points off the bench.