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Philadelphia 76ers star Ben Simmons is one of the more unique stars in the game. He is able to make a huge impact on the game despite not putting up big scoring numbers on a regular basis.

However, when the time calls for it, he has not been able to rise to the occasion just yet.

He is fresh off a 2021 postseason run where he shot just 34.2% from the foul line and he averaged just 9.9 points in Philadelphia’s Round 2 series with the Atlanta Hawks. The final game of the playoffs brought a lot of criticism as he shot just four times and scored five points in the Game 7 home loss.

Milwaukee Bucks Hall of Famer, Sidney Moncrief, joined Paul Gant on the “Go4it” podcast and he discussed Simmons’ struggles:

I just think it’s very unusual for a superstar player that’s very celebrated to not want to take a shot down the stretch, but I’ve seen it over the years with even top players. That maybe they were struggling from the foul line. They would not want to even be in the lane to get fouled. So, I’ve seen that before, and I don’t want anyone to think that Ben Simmons’ case is something unique or different because when I reflect back, I’ve seen some really good players do that same thing. They didn’t want to get fouled, so they wouldn’t shoot the ball; they would pass it. They could be under the basket, and they would pass it. They wouldn’t even go to the basket to make sure they would not get fouled, so I just felt sorry for him because I know he was thinking, ‘I don’t want to hurt the team right now.’ So, I’m going to pass the ball and not get fouled as opposed to thinking, ‘I’m going to dunk this basketball and get two points.’

Moncrief did add that Simmons will have to put in the correct work in order to improve as a player. He has to be able to be in the gym and continue to work on his game with coach Doc Rivers and the staff:

A lot of times, people say, ‘I need to get in the gym and work.’ No, it’s how you work. It’s just not getting in the gym and working. It’s what situations are you putting yourself in when you’re working in the summer that could simulate that type of scenario when you’re in the game. I know it’s hard to recreate, but you can do certain things in practice in the summer to put more pressure on yourself for you to get better in those situations. So, it’s fixable, Absolutely.

For Simmons’ sake, it has to be fixed. He is too good of a player to be struggling this much either from the foul line or on offense, in general. The offseason has to be dedicated to working on his foul shots in order to make sure this does not happen again. Whether that is in Philadelphia or with another team does remain to be seen.

This post originally appeared on Sixers Wire! Follow us on Facebook!


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