Doc Rivers’ first take as Sixers’ head coach on Ben Simmons’ unwillingness to shoot jumpers
Doc Rivers is set to begin his duties as the newly minted head coach of the Philadelphia 76ers, with the Sixers’ social media account posting him arriving at his office.
Back to business. 💼 pic.twitter.com/eIvfoEs94I
One of the first orders of business for the former coach of the Los Angeles Clippers is how he can help All-Stars Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons reach another level for a team that has championship aspirations.
Rivers was also asked about Simmons’ reluctance to shoot jumpers with the Sixers, which is one of the biggest concerns about the 24-year old. But the champion coach doesn’t seem to have much of a problem with it.
“I am so much more concerned with our team scoring than individuals scoring,” Rivers told ESPN’s Ohm Youngmisuk. “Ben has proven that he is a guy that can create scoring… I don’t see a lot of bad there.”
Simmons, who was named an All-Star for the second straight year, finished the season with averages of 16.4 points, 7.8 rebounds, and eight assists per game while shooting 58% from the field.
The first overall pick of the 2016 NBA Draft does create a lot of scoring for himself and his teammates, leading the Sixers in assists while facilitating their offense. Simmons, however, has shot just 2-of-7 (28.6%) from beyond the arc in 57 games last season and 2-of-24 (0.83%) for his career.
Rivers pointed out the team’s scoring, as Philadelphia scored just 110.7 points per game last season, which ranks just 20th in the league, while having an offensive rating of 111.3, the 13th best mark in the NBA.
Rivers, who also coached the Boston Celtics and Orlando Magic before the Clippers, will look to help the Sixers make a deep playoff run after a season that saw them finish with a 43-30 record, good for sixth seed in the Eastern Conference, but were swept out of the first round by the Celtics.