Hold up—forget LeBron 2.0. It’s take two for the Sixers’ wunderkind, and he ain’t drinking, he ain’t stressing—he’s just flexin’ on the entire NBA. Now give him the damn ball already. Chapter 1 of B/R Mag’s NBA preview.
By Yaron Weitzman
October 10, 2017
Ben Simmons can’t decide on a warm-up song.
It’s late January, and he’s standing on the sidelines of Philadelphia’s Wells Fargo Center. In blue jeans and a fitted gray hoodie, an iPhone in each hand, Simmons is watching the Sixers launch jumpers and loosen up for their evening matchup against the Sacramento Kings. This will be the team’s 47th game of the season. This is also the 47th game Simmons will miss.
Yet he’s feeling optimistic. He fractured a bone in his right foot before the start of the 2016-17 season, and now, nearly three months later, his NBA debut is just weeks away. Or so he hopes.
Simmons imagines himself on the court, wizardly whipping no-look passes and speeding up and down the floor with a grace 6’10”, 250-pound men aren’t supposed to possess. He’s burning to ball again—eager to fulfill all of the lofty expectations that come with being the NBA’s No. 1 overall draft pick. Which is why, with the pregame clock ticking down to zero, he and his best friend, Cisco Silva, are scrolling through songs on one of his phones in search of the perfect warm-up track.