When the Philadelphia 76ers traded for the number one pick and selected Markelle Fultz, there were question marks about who would play at the point guard position.
Since last year, head coach Brett Brown has continually stated his wish to play Ben Simmons at the one spot and give him ball-handling responsibilities.
So during a media briefing before the start of the team's training camp, Brown was asked how he plans to use Simmons in his rookie season now that he's back to full health.
He once again went on the record to confirm that he was "locked in" to the talented Australian being his point guard and explained why he would get the nod over others.
“I’m committed to him [at point guard], even in the half court,” Brown said. "There is a vision-line at 6-10 that he has that T.J. [McConnell] doesn't have.
"And so seeing things from that vision-line and then having the intellect to see things a little bit quicker than others is a powerful combination as a passer."
The 56-year-old was full of praise for Simmons and clearly has high expectations for him as the future face of the franchise.
Despite not making his debut, Brown has seen enough from the 21-year-old to suggest that he'll be a star and outlined some of his strengths.
“When you talk about his sheer body, his athleticism, there is a breakaway speed that is jaw-dropping,” Brown said.
“We watch him go from A to B, his first step and a half. If you interviewed world-class sprint coaches, they would talk about that. His first steps are elite. It’s jaw-dropping at times, his ability to cover ground.”
Having suffered a fracture to the fifth metatarsal in his right foot last season, this sounds extremely positive and it sounds like he's showing no ill-effects from that.
The LSU product has already been cleared for all basketball activities and general manager Bryan Colangelo says there won't be any restrictions on him during his rookie year.
“I don’t force any restrictions with Ben,” Colangelo said. “He’s been playing five-on-five and competing for some time now.”
With the Aussie set to assume point guard duties, it will mean this year's number one pick Fultz will have to play off the ball often.
But an opportunity to put the duo on the floor with Joel Embiid and free agent signing J.J. Redick will present the coaching staff with many options offensively.
If they can maintain a healthy roster, the 76ers will have a realistic chance to return to the playoffs.News Now - Sport News