Joel Embiid Defends Ben Simmons' Game on Twitter: 'His Value Goes Beyond Stats'

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistFebruary 5, 2021

FILE - In this Dec. 13, 2019, file photo, Philadelphia 76ers' Ben Simmons, right, and Joel Embiid talk during an NBA basketball game against the New Orleans Pelicans in Philadelphia. Simmons says he’s 100% healthy following surgery on his left knee in August that kept him from playing in the postseason. Simmons is tight with center Joel Embiid and says the two franchise stars are ready to lead the Sixers to their first NBA championship since 1983.(AP Photo/Matt Slocum, File)
Matt Slocum/Associated Press

Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid stood up for teammate Ben Simmons on Friday when a Twitter user criticized the polarizing point guard.

After Embiid implored people to vote for Simmons in the All-Star voting, the Twitter user replied: "Stop [he's] averaging 13 ppg, even ur other teammates Tobias [Harris] deserves the spot more."

In response, Embiid tweeted:

Joel “Troel” Embiid @JoelEmbiid

@YamiOGKush @BenSimmons25 Well I guess you didn’t watch the game yesterday. His value goes beyond the stats. And Tobias has been dominating and consistent all season and the team is the #1 seed in the east

The NBA posted the first round of All-Star voting results Thursday, and Simmons didn't receive much support, ranking 10th among Eastern Conference guards with just 117,993 votes.

Voters likely haven't been impressed with Simmons' surface-level stats, as he is averaging a career-low 13.4 points per game to go along with 8.1 rebounds, 8.0 assists and 1.7 steals.

Simmons is shooting a strong 53.7 percent from the field, but his 16.7 percent from three and 63.6 percent from the free-thrown line leave plenty to be desired.   

Shooting has been a major question mark throughout his career, and that continues to be the case, as he has made only three three-point field goals in 237 regular-season games.

Simmons is far from a perfect player, but he is among the NBA's best playmakers and one of the best perimeter defenders in the game.

Embiid argued that Simmons deserves to be an All-Star because of the fact that he contributes to winning basketball in ways that don't always show up on the stat sheet.

Simmons' play has had a role in both Embiid and forward Tobias Harris putting up big numbers this season. Embiid is averaging 29.1 points, 10.8 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.3 blocks per game, putting him firmly in the MVP conversation.

Meanwhile, Harris is averaging a career-high 20.2 points per game to go along with 7.2 rebounds and 2.9 assists.

Embiid suggested there is room for himself, Harris and Simmons on the Eastern Conference All-Star team, and since the Sixers have the best record in the East at 16-7, he may have a point.    


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