In his postgame chat with the media, NBA star Ben Simmons expressed confidence that he can return to his peak All-Star form. After admitting that his body is “feeling better,” Ben promised to find his rhythm with time.
“I’m feeling better. It just takes time. It’s one of those things where it’s up and down each day but I’m just starting with it. The storm doesn’t last forever. I’m going to get back to where I was. I’m staying on it. Each day is a day to get better.”
Simmons has only suited up in 10 games this season, but tonight was one of his first games back after an extended absence. Over 22 minutes, he dropped 13 points, 5 assists, and 6 rebounds in the Nets’ 123-103 win. He made some impressive shots, including a nice turnaround jumper, and was a pest on defense all night long. The performance was a perfect display of the things that Ben brings to the table and it’s a reminder that he was an All-Star not too long ago.
Though Ben’s return has provided a boost for the Nets this season, he’s the last remnant of a lost era for the franchise. After forcing his way out from the 76ers in 2022, he was traded to the Nets in the deal that sent James Harden to Philadelphia. Simmons rarely got any playtime with Kevin Durant or Kyrie Iring before they requested trades themselves, and now he’s the only star left. This season, Brooklyn was hoping that Simmons could revert to his two-way playstyle of old but he just hasn’t been healthy enough to really make any kind of difference. and the team has suffered for it with one of the worst records in the East.
Ben Simmons Is A Shell Of His Former Self
Ben Simmon’s career has taken turns unlike any other. After missing the entirety of the 2016-17 campaign, Ben averaged nearly 16 points as a rookie and would make the All-Star team the following season with averages of 16.9 points and 7.7 assists per game. While Simmons always struggled as a shooter, he could always be counted on to deliver on defense and he was one of the best in the league on that end of the floor for years. It was during the 2021 playoffs that things took a turn for the worse. Against the Hawks in the second round, Simmons’ game completely collapsed and he became the laughingstock of the league for infamously passing up an open dunk.
After a long and brutal cold war, Simmons was traded from Philly but he’s never really gotten the chance to thrive in New York. This season, with no distractions and a clean bill of health for the first time in ages, the thinking is that Ben can finally start to build up his confidence on the court again after years of endless struggles. Unfortunately for the Nets, it probably still won’t be enough to live up to his contract. Set to make almost $80 million over the next two seasons, Ben is an expensive project for the Nets and time is running out to rehabilitate his game. If he can’t become an All-Star again, or at least a starting-level player, Ben will just have to live with being a low-level bench player until he can prove that he can handle more. At the very least, it’s a good sign that Simmons still has the confidence that a major comeback is on the way.
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