The podcast episode of JJ Redick with Ben Simmons came out and the latter was finally able to come back to some important passages of the saga which opposed him to the Sixers. One of them concerns this famous lay-up refused in game 7 of the series against Atlanta, which helped to turn the public against him. He mentioned it with his former teammate, acknowledging his wrongs without justifying the treatment received in the process.
As a reminder, there were over 3 minutes left and the Sixers were trailing by just two points when Ben Simmons opted for a pass to Matisse Thybulle rather than a dunk.
“At the time, I pivoted assuming Trae Young was going to come at me faster and at full intensity. I saw Matisse Thybulle. He’s athletic, he’s able to go dunk that. I thought he was going to do that, not realizing how much space there was or not.
It happened very quickly and you have little time to read the action. In the playoffs, you have to make the right decisions most of the time. After that, I said to myself: ‘OK, we have to go and succeed in another action’. I didn’t realize that everyone was going to post the action and talk about it. I didn’t think it was such a big thing.
When I spun around, I only saw one jersey. I didn’t know it was Trae. But when you slow down the image, damn it looks catastrophic (laughs)! When I watch the action today, I think I should have fucking dunked this thing. That’s not what happened and I could live with that and the fact that everyone would want to kill me because of it.
Do people want to do video analysis with me? I can dissect the whole game if you want, but that’s not realistic. It must also be said: damn, I had to keep the best player of the other team for the whole match”.
Watch the full episode: https://t.co/XvcwoCFhLG pic.twitter.com/HR7HHIpWeT
— TheOldMan&TheThree (@OldManAndThree) September 22, 2022
The fact that Doc Rivers and a sizable part of the Sixers HQ, including Joel Embiid, threw Ben Simmons under the wheels of the bus after that still seems pretty unfair. But that does not justify either that he was ready to boycott a training camp and a season if the franchise did not accede to his request for a trade… This episode, he also mentioned it in the podcast and we will come back to this in a future article.
Ben Simmons doesn’t hate Philadelphia, even though fans are pissed off