The Philadelphia 76ers have a special player in Ben Simmons. He is one of the most gifted and popular players in the league, but is he playing the right position? Does Brett Brown need to make a change in the near future?
Ben Simmons has a problem. It is a problem that an ego check would easily help solve. If he was not obstinate to change, the results could be monumental. Clearly, the elephant in the room is his lack of a jump shot. While he’s trying to figure out when and if he will decide to shoot, perhaps there is another avenue the Philadelphia 76ers can take.
Throughout NBA history, there have been a number of players with a similar stature as Simmons. Their height lent itself to the forward position and all of the responsibilities that came with it. Rebounding and defending the opposing teams’ most athletic wing players are just a few of them.
The truly special forwards used an ability to dribble and run a fast break to the likes of a point guard. The point forward position is nothing new and Simmons could be more effective for the 76ers if head coach Brett Brown convinced him to do so in transition situations.
Players like Grant Hill, Scottie Pippen, and LeBron James demonstrate that versatility is an asset. Getting a team into its half-court set and running plays for the team was something they didn’t do at the amateur level. There was some position adjustment for those players as their careers advanced.
At Duke, Hill had Bobby Hurley running the offense. In Chicago, John Paxson brought the ball up the court while Pippen played a traditional small forward. With LeBron, playing with several teams where he had point guards like Eric Snow and Mario Chalmers, there were key moments where James would take the helm of the offense.