For the second consecutive season, the Fresh Prince will play in the world’s greatest pickup game. The NBA revealed this season’s all-star reserves on Thursday, Ben Simmons among them. The third-year point forward is averaging 16.3 points, 7.8 rebounds, 8.4 assists, and 2.2 steals. However, his stat sheet production is just half of what makes him a worthy candidate for all-star selection. His All-NBA-caliber defense is what solidified his case as an all-star.
All-Star caliber players Ben Simmons has guarded this season (Butler, Tatum, Siakam, Beal, LeBron, Westbrook, Harden) have shot a combined 26 of 87 when guarded by Simmons, per https://t.co/xgkmngcCNr. That’s 29.8 percent.— Paul Hudrick (@PaulHudrick) January 30, 2020
A dominant stopper on defense and a triple-double flirt on offense, Simmons has fortified himself as one of the NBA’s best all-around players.
Tobias Harris, who is averaging 19.4 points (48% FG, 35.8% 3FG, 79.7% FT) and 6.7 rebounds, did not make the cut. Barring injuries, Harris will have to wait until 2020-21 to make his case for his first all-star selection.