Philadelphia 76ers: Ben Simmons took another 3-pointer against the Pelicans

(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

After showing off his brand-new shot at All-Star weekend practices, Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons took a wide open 3-pointer against the Pelicans.

Did you miss the first quarter (or 90 seconds) of the Philadelphia 76ers game against the New Orleans Pelicans?

Boy, you miss a good one.

Not only did Brett Brown‘s squad outscore the Pelicans 31-24, but Ben Simmons just so happened to take a 3-pointer 63 seconds into the game.

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That’s right, playing in front of his ‘hometown’ college crowd, the former LSU Tiger attempted a wide-open 3 from the top of the key, leaving fans around the world, and on Twitter, in absolute awe.

I was so surprised by the feat, I initially assumed it was taken by his fellow countrymen Jonah Bolden, who received a surprise start in relief of Joel Embiid.

But no, it was, in fact, Ben ‘The Fresh Prince’ Simmons, attempting his fourth 3-pointer of the season, and third in the month of February.

Did he make it? Of course not, but after being almost petrified of taking a shot from outside of the paint over his first year in the league, it’s so incredibly encouraging to see the Sixers’ point-forward-center now willing to attempt 3-pointers when opposing defenses decide to lag in coverage.

Who knows, maybe one of these days it will actually go in?

But hey, even if Simmons never becomes a reliable shooter, even at a sub-league average clip, his willingness to take the shot will force opposing defenses to play him differently.

If Simmons starts takings 3s, it will allow Embiid to spend more time in the paint, where he’s among the best one-on-one iso ball scorers in the entire league. Furthermore, but taking shots from downtown, Simmons will free up driving lanes in the paint, which will make his job as a scorer and facilitator that much easier in the forthcoming weeks.

Like LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo before him, Simmons entered the league as a dynamic facilitator, a position-less wonder, but someone with a rudimentary offensive game. If Simmons can start takings 3s, even if he’s not particularly effective at making them, he will become a more complete player, and unlock his potential to be an MVP candidate, much like this year’s All-Star game captains.

That’s right, Ben doesn’t have to be J.J. Redick to be effective; if he can just match the production of his current teammate Jonathon (Simmons), who shoots 3s at a 31.4 percent clip, he could become an unguardable force that effectively required a double-team every time he has the ball in his hands.

Now I may be mistaken, but opposing teams can’t double-team Simmons and Embiid at the same time, right? That would leave one defender to cover Redick, Tobias Harris, and Jimmy Butler on the wings, a task easier said than done.

Next. Ben Simmons has to be in Space Jam 2. dark

But that’s the benefit Ben Simmons outside shot can bring to the offensive table; optionality. With Brett Brown’s current scheme designed to “hunt for mismatches“, if an opposing defense has to reliably worry about all five of the Philadelphia 76ers’ starters scoring from anywhere on the court, it will make the team all the more unguardable down the stretch.