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Ben Simmons edging closer to making NBA debut

Thu, Jan 12, 2:24pm by Head Editor

The wait continues for Melbourne’s Ben Simmons, who was Philadelphia’s overall number one pick, to make his NBA debut after getting foot surgery in the offseason.

After his surgery, January was mentioned as his likely return – and here we are. So now what? Well the news is finally looking up for the 208cm point forward.

Centre Joel Embiid faced the media on Wednesday (AEDT) at the Sixers training facility and hinted to the media that Simmons’ return is likely imminent.

“We played [Simmons] at point guard today,” Embiid told Philadelphia’s Metro after practice. “It’s exciting. I can’t wait to play with him.”

As the season began, there was some debate as to what role the college standout would play in the NBA — but it sounds like it’s pretty much been decided that he will play point guard.

Besides T.J. McConnell, the team has struggled at that position and his elusiveness and quickness should make up for his lack of shooting ability and perhaps his size — which may both assist and hinder his defence against other NBA point guards.

Coach Brett Brown will have his full complement of young players to work with once Simmons enters the fold. However, in recent games there has been a lot of rotation and lineup questions raised as the 55 year-old searches for his best combinations.

But Embiid isn’t worried about any of that — he just wants his teammates on the floor with him.

“The next step is all of us getting on the court and being healthy,” Embiid said. “When that happens, the sky is the limit.”

Simmons, played only 33 games for LSU but his all-round numbers were brilliant, ending the season averaging over 19 points, 12 rebounds, five assists and two steals per game.

The 76ers desperately want him back in the starting line-up as they currently sit in third last place in the Eastern conference with 10 wins and 25 losses. They are $251 to win the conference and $501 for the Championship with Sportsbet.


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