Ben Simmons Ready to Be ‘more Assertive' for Sixers in Las Vegas Summer League

LAS VEGAS -- Ben Simmons is a versatile, multidimensional player, so how do the Sixers hone in on one specific area of his game to work on during Las Vegas summer league?

It has nothing to do with the position he is playing. 

“I want to see him be aggressive,” Sixers Samsung NBA Summer League coach Lloyd Pierce said Friday.

Simmons displayed hesitancy to shoot during his two games at the Utah summer league. He shot a combined 4 for 17 from the field (23.5 percent) and did not attempt a three. He contributed with his savvy ball handling (5.5 assists) and 7.5 rebounds.

Simmons said he wants to contribute wherever needed, from scoring to passing to defending. He also understands there is an emphasis to look for his shot.

“[I am going to] be more assertive, attacking the rim more I guess,” Simmons said. “I think that’s the main thing coming to Vegas, I’ll definitely be more aggressive. I’ve got a feel for everybody on my team, so it’ll be a lot easier.”

The Sixers aren’t looking to transform Simmons into a 40-point-a-game player at summer league. That wasn’t his repertoire at LSU and there are other areas of his game to develop as well.  

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“Let Ben be Ben,” Pierce said of the Sixers’ approach. “He’s been reluctant and that’s been the criticism on him coming out of college. That’s not going to change overnight." 

Pierce also noted, “You always want him to be as good of a shooter as he can be. It’s not going to be his strength. His strength is going to be passing, facilitating, playmaking. That’s going to be an added bonus, whatever the percentage or the number is."

For Simmons, the most important part of the game is whether or not the Sixers come out on top. They finished 1-2 in Utah and are looking to capture their Las Vegas opener Saturday night against the Lakers. 

“Win, that's it,” Simmons said of his summer league objectives. “Just win.”

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