Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons (208 cm, LSU’16) has been named the NBA Rookie of the Year for 2017-18. The 21-year-old Australian player beat out Utah’s Donovan Mitchell and Boston’s Jayson Tatum. He was drafted by the Sixers first overall in the 2016 NBA draft but Simmons was unable to make his debut in 2016-17 after being ruled out for the season as he recovered from surgery to repair a Jones fracture in his right foot.
It was only in 2017-18 that World got to witness his amazing skills on the court when he started as the 76ers point guard. He played in 81 regular season games for the Sixers and dropped averages of 15.8 ppg, 8.1 rpg and 8.1 apg. His size and athletic ability allowed him to contribute 1.7 spg and 0.8 bpg, while his renowned court vision got him flirting with a triple-double on a regular basis.
“I’d like to thank my family to start out with … family, friends, you know I wouldn’t be here without them,” Simmons said in his acceptance speech. “My teammates of course and my great coach, and the city of Philadelphia for really embracing me and my family, so thank you.”
Simmons is a one-of-a-kind talent and has already drawn comparisons to LeBron James and even Magic Johnson. His weakness lies in his range or lack thereof. He makes up for it with his contributions in other categories and should have a very bright future ahead in the NBA.
The other NBA awards went to:
James Harden – Most Valuable Player
Victor Oladipo – Most Improved Player
Rudy Gobert – Defensive Player of the Year
Lou Williams – Sixth Man of the Year
Dwayne Casey – Coach of the Year