Any time someone in a room speaks on the passing, game-IQ, defensive, or transition skills of Brooklyn Nets star Ben Simmons, there’s almost always someone who follows, casting stones in the Aussie’s direction for his lacking jump shot. That noise was heard in Philadelphia for years, and we’re now hearing it in Brooklyn.
It’s gotten so loud that Simmons cannot help help but address it, which he did while opening up on J.J. Redick’s podcast The Old Man and the Three this morning.
After speaking with his old teammate about his game for a few minutes, Redick asked Simmons, “Are you going to shoot threes this year season for the Nets?”
Chuckling with Redick while doing so, Simmons responded, “Yeah, I need to. Just go out there and put some up. Kevin’s wide open? Nope.”
While this sarcastic answer might not have been what basketball modernists want to hear, it was the perfect one for Simmons to give.
Like it or not, Simmons remains a non-shooter. He even spoke on this with Redick right around the 14 minute mark of this same podcast episode. Simmons will instead help the Nets in every department outside of shooting, which is what the team needs.
Having mentioned Durant as someone he’d hypothetically be taking shots away from, Simmons clearly recognizes this. The Nets wield a roster overflowing with shooters by way of Kyrie Irving, Patty Mills, Seth Curry, Joe Harris, and Royce O’Neale, who all shot above 38 percent from deep last year.
Simmons, who led the league in assisted 3-pointers since coming into the league and leading up to last season, will be like dropping a spark on a pool of gasoline when playing beside his new teammates. We know that and he knows that as well.
And for whatever it’s worth, Simmons conveyed this realization to us with some humor as well. After such a turbulent 2021-22 season and offseason to follow, Nets fans can surely appreciate that.