The NBA’s Rookie of the Year race has been one of the two-horse variety for months now.
There’s the Philadelphia 76ers’ Ben Simmons, who sat out last season because of injury but is now drawing Magic Johnson comparisons for his ability to stuff a stat sheet. And then there’s Donovan Mitchell, who is about to become the first rookie since Carmelo Anthony to lead a playoff team in scoring.
Both players have set impressive records in their first (healthy) seasons as professionals. Still, Simmons doesn’t seem to think the “race” should be close, an opinion he vocalized Monday morning.
”Who would I pick? Me, 100 percent,” Simmons told ESPN at the Ritz-Carlton in downtown Philadelphia on Saturday.!
“I think I have been playing solid all year,” he continued. “If you look at the numbers, you will see. People who know the game know.”
When the 6-foot-10 point guard was told the Rookie of the Year race appears to be a two-man show, he buried his head down and proceeded to chuckle. Asked what rookies have caught his attention this year, he didn’t mince words.
”None,” Simmons responded promptly.
Donovan, your thoughts?
The man has taken to both the NBA game and the league’s universal language — passive aggressive memes on social media -- like a fish to water.