Ben Simmons fires off bold caution on Lakers, Nets
After Monday night’s victory over the Dallas Mavericks, the Philadelphia 76ers remained the top seed in the Eastern Conference, and star guard Ben Simmons is feeling extra confident. The Sixers improved to 37-17 and Simmons feels they can take on all comers.
Ben Simmons: "We're going for the past champs, the Lakers. They were the ones who won a championship, so you got to give the respect to them. Obviously Brooklyn has a lot of talent. But at the end of the day, there's only one ball and you gotta play defense too."
— Rich Hofmann (@rich_hofmann) April 13, 2021
Simmons alluded to the Lakers as the team to beat. Even though they have been without their two superstars in LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the Purple and Gold are still a threat in the tough Western Conference. While Simmons showed respect for the Nets for their star firepower with Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and James Harden, he pointed out their defensive inconsistencies. The Nets are ranked 25th in the NBA for points allowed.
Speaking of defense, as the NBA season winds down, Simmons also has set his sights on the Defensive Player of the Year trophy. He proclaimed himself as the “clear cut” best defender in the NBA as he has shown his versatility on the defensive end by guarding all five positions on the floor.
Simmons’ name is in the DPOY conversation with Rudy Gobert and Giannis Antetokounmpo but he said he doesn’t want to be a runner-up.
Simmons with a very clear goal for himself: “I want to be the clear cut best defender in the league…I don’t want to be second or third.”
— Kyle Neubeck (@KyleNeubeck) April 13, 2021
Ben Simmons has a chance to walk the talk as the Sixers face the Nets on Wednesday. It, however, remains unclear if Irving or Harden will be available. The Nets are coming off of a tough loss against the Lakers last Saturday, while the Sixers have won seven of their last 10 games.