Quickly after the Philly 76ers’ Video game 7 loss to the Atlanta Hawks on Sunday evening, Joel Embiid offered credit score to his opponents, criticized the officiating and claimed he needed to enhance his video game. When used an opportunity, however, to find fault elsewhere, the 76ers’ all-star center pointed to his group’s other all-star, guard/forward Ben Simmons.
Asked if there was a minute Sunday when his idea in his team became resignation that the 76ers were not going to advancement, Joel Embiid responded, “I’ll be honest: I believed the turning point was when we had an open shot, and we made one free throw as well as we missed the other, as well as they boiled down and racked up.”
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” From there … it’s on me,” he included. “I turned the ball over as well as tried to make something happen from the border. “However I assumed that was the turning factor.”
From the information Embiid gave, he was clearly referring to a sequence that started with less than 4 minutes to play and Atlanta up by 2. Simmons had the round on the low block as well as spun past the Hawks’ Danilo Gallinari. At that point, there was absolutely nothing straight between the basket and also the 6-11 Ben Simmons, yet he passed up what seemed a simple possibility for a dunk and also instead threw the ball to colleague Matisse Thybulle, that was standing near the paint. Thybulle got fouled on a layup attempt and also, as noted by Embiid, made 1 of 2 free throw attempts.
Trading a dunk for a free throw only set you back Philadelphia one factor, but Simmons’s distinct reticence likewise cost his group what can have been an uplifting, momentum-shifting soft-pedal the stretch. Moreover, it evoked a disappointed reaction from Joel Embiid on the court and also encapsulated why lots of are condemning Simmons for the 76ers’ loss as well as hypothesizing that he may have played his last game for them.
The No. 1 choice of the 2016 draft, Simmons has shown premium skills as a passer, defender as well as finisher in transition, but he likewise has actually come under some worrying tendencies as a shooter.
In 275 regular period games, he has actually taken 34 three-point shots, an extremely reduced number in this era for a boundary gamer getting heavy minutes. Over 6 playoff collection because 2018, he has taken simply two three-pointers, an almost difficult feat of gun-shyness. Simmons has made just 5 of those 36 combined efforts, which partially explains his resistance in taking them, but his inability or unwillingness to stretch the defense has actually been a persistent problem for the 76ers.
At least as big of an issue, if not better, has been Simmons’s descent into uncharted waters of free throw futility. Throughout this postseason, in which Philadelphia defeated the Washington Wizards in five video games prior to falling to the Hawks in seven, he made just 25 of 73 efforts from the stripe. For gamers with a minimum of 70 free throw efforts in a provided postseason, Simmons’s 34.2 percent is the most awful in NBA history.
Not just was Ben Simmons costing his group factors at the line, yet his noticeable worry of being sent there additionally provided him an offensive non-factor late in games. Throughout the 4th quarters of Games 4 through 7 versus the Hawks, a period in which the 76ers shed 3 times as well as two times blew huge leads, Simmons played 34 minutes and also took absolutely no shots from the area.
” Clearly, he battled from the charity line, and that came to be a factor in this series, there’s no doubt regarding that,” Philadelphia Coach Doc Rivers claimed of Simmons after Sunday’s season-ending, 103-96 home loss. “I still believe in him, but we have work to do. We’re mosting likely to have to get in the gym and put a great deal of work in.”
Asked if the 76ers might expect to be a championship-caliber team with Simmons as their point guard, Rivers replied, “I don’t recognize the answer to that.”
As a “positive” for Simmons, Rivers noted his protection on Hawks celebrity Trae Youthful, who made simply 5 of 23 shots Sunday. Simmons did the very same himself, informing reporters that Atlanta’s offending catalyst “had a tough night.”
As for his efficiency in various other areas, Simmons informed reporters: “I didn’t shoot well from the line this series. Offensively, I had not been there. I didn’t do enough for my teammates. There’s a great deal of points I require to deal with.”
Asked about passing the round to Thybulle while near the basket late in the video game, Simmons claimed he believed making that play would certainly result in “a wide-open dunk.” He “assumed” Gallinari was looming for a possible block from behind on him as well as assumed Atlanta’s John Collins had vacated the method of Thybulle’s path to the basket.
” I feel like I located my people tonite, which I perform in the normal period,” stated Simmons, that finished with 13 helps Sunday. He did not agree with a reporter’s idea that he was a various, much less assertive player in the postseason.
” Nah, I’m not going to allow you claim that,” he answered back. “We lost. It sucks. I am that I am. It is what it is.”
Indicating the Brooklyn Internet’ agonizing, seven-game loss to the Milwaukee Bucks, Simmons added, “It’s difficult to win.”
With a great deal to consider throughout an offseason that arrived much sooner than the top-seeded 76ers would certainly have suched as, Simmons claimed the first thing he would certainly do is “clear my mind and also get my mental right.”
It continues to be to be seen if Simmons is still on the 76ers when the offseason finishes. In the wake of their loss, there has been lots of discussion concerning whether the group should trade him and, if so, what type of return he could fetch. A complicating element is his agreement, which owes him about $146 million over the next 4 periods. One point seems clear: As a gamer with glaring limitations on violation, Simmons’s perceived on-court value is lower currently than at any previous point in his NBA job.
“You can’t have a man on the court who’s afraid to shoot the basketball,” TNT expert Charles Barkley stated after Sunday’s game.
Embiid praised his team as a group of “excellent men on and off the court,” however after his remarks regarding the video game’s “transforming factor,” he was asked if he wished to see the very same group return following season.
“That’s a challenging question,” Embiid replied, decreasing to elaborate.