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Rumor: Ben Simmons’ decision to skip FIBA World Cup is mutual with Australia so he can focus on his shooting

Sixers, Ben Simmons

Sixers point forward Ben Simmons has faced quite a bit of criticism since joining the NBA ranks. He’s obviously a great player, but many experts point to his shooting form as a point of weakness. Knowing this, Simmons has decided to skip this year’s FIBA competition to focus on his stroke:

Simmons posted great numbers last season, averaging 16.9 points on 56.3 percent shooting from the field, 8.8 rebounds, 7.7 assists, 1.4 steals and just under one block (0.8). However, he has never made a 3-point shot in his NBA career and rarely takes shots from outside the paint. Clearly, he isn’t comfortable shooting the long ball. His free-throw percentage (60 percent) isn’t good either.

Bad form or not, Simmons and the Sixers made it all the way to the Eastern Conference Semifinals, where they were defeated by the Toronto Raptors, 4-3. Were it not for Kawhi Leonard’s rim-tickling buzzer-beater in Game 7, Philly may have reached the Eastern Conference Finals.

In the end, Ben Simmons is still one of the best players in today’s game. But today’s game calls for 3-point shooting, and a lot of it. If he can manage to develop his form this summer, opposing teams will have to alter their scouting reports.