Brooklyn Nets forward Jared Dudley brought some spice on Wednesday when he criticized Philly point guard Ben Simmons.
Here we go. Things are starting to heat up between the Brooklyn Nets and Philadelphia 76ers. While Joel Embiid’s “laughing apology” ruffled some feathers in Brooklyn, Jared Dudley is doing his best to return the favor.
After two physical games in Philly, Dudley has an interesting assessment of Ben Simmons and his offensive game.
Jared Dudley dropping gems at media availability: "Ben Simmons is a great player in transition. And once you get him into halfcourt, he's average."
— Stefan Bondy (@SBondyNYDN) April 17, 2019
Clearly, Dudley knows exactly what he’s doing here. Prior to the series, Brooklyn’s most outspoken veteran said that the plan for Simmons was to give him space and pack the paint.
He shut down Simmons in Game 1 by slowing him down in transition and packing the paint when he has the ball. It worked to perfection and Simmons was a complete non-factor in the loss. The 6-foot-10 point guard was held to nine points, seven rebounds, and three assists.
Dudley was forced to sit out Game 2 with a calf strain and Simmons ran wild. He was able to run in transition and dominate the Nets with his rare combination of size and speed. He responded from his Game 1 dud with 18 points, 10 rebounds, and 12 assists.
The Nets desperately need Dudley’s savvy back in the lineup. Despite being somewhat of an afterthought at the beginning of the season, Dudley’s veteran presence has been a major key to Brooklyn’s success.
The good news for the Nets is that Dudley is currently listed as probable for Game 3 according to the official NBA report. The Nets will host the Sixers in Barclays Center at 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 18.