Nets point guard Ben Simmons hasn’t played in an NBA game since June of 2021. He’s gone through plenty of ups and downs since then, which has included switching teams after getting traded by the 76ers to Brooklyn.
But now? He’s ready to go, and he’s looking good in practice, according to head coach Steve Nash. Simmons has no idea how many three-pointers he’ll attempt this year, and it sounds like Nash couldn’t care less about that, either.
Here’s what Nash had to say about Simmons (quote via ESPN):
That’s what makes Ben great. That’s why I don’t care if he ever shoots a jump shot for the Brooklyn Nets. He’s welcome to, but that is not what makes him special and not what we need. He’s a great complement to our team, and he’s an incredible basketball player because of his versatility.
Nash also spoke to Simmons’ versatility and unique skill set. Not caring about him ever taking another jump shot sounds weird on the surface, but coaches want their players to do what they’re best at. Plus, the Nets have two other guys who can take plenty of jump shots (and are pretty good at it) in Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant.
If everything goes well, the trio of Simmons, Irving, and Durant could be quite a productive one. However, they still haven’t all played on the floor at the same time together, so there’s an adjustment process that needs to take place. Here’s what Simmons had to say about getting used to how his teammates play ball:
You’re playing with some great NBA players, some of the greatest. So, for me, it’s just playing alongside them, figuring out where they want their shots, how they move, different spots on the floor where I need to be. It’s just timing.
Simmons will shoot jumpers this year — there’s no way around it. However, it must be nice to hear from Nash that he can just focus on what can make him great on a basketball court.
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