Ben Simmons has been tipped by ESPN as the projected favourite to win the Rookie of the Year award for the 2016/17 season.
The forward won the vote with a total of 207 points, 35 of those being first-place votes. Kris Dunn of the Minnesota Timberwolves came in a distant second with 89 points and 2016’s number two overall pick, Brandon Ingram of the Lakers, rounding out the top three with 71 points.
Philadelphia 76ers’ first overall pick impressed at the Summer League, displaying the vision and guile that had been written about for so long. He will get all the minutes he can handle in Philly as, according to Coach Brett Brown, he will gradually develop into running the point in the mould of LeBron James, due to the lack of an competent point guard on the roster.
At the Summer League in Las Vegas, Simmons played the point and averaged 12.3 points, 7.8 rebounds and 5.5 assists, which signals huge stats across the board next season when considering his predicted usage rate.
Last year’s projected Rookie of the Year, Karl-Anthony Towns, went on to win the award after a brilliant season, averaging 18.3 points, 10.5 rebounds and 1.7 blocks. Simmons will find himself in similar circumstances; a young burgeoning team looking to unleash their talent in order to develop in the right way.
The Sixers finally seem to be on track in achieving their aims after drafting four big men that essentially all played the same position. Joel Embiid will reportedly be fit for the new season and a line-up that consists of the likes of Simmons, Embiid, Nerlens Noel and Jahlil Okafor will be an exciting prospect for the future of Philadelphia.