During the telecast of the LSU-Marquette game at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn Monday night, it was noted that there were over 50 NBA scouts in attendance to see LSU’s Ben Simmons, and it’s easy to see why. While Simmons shied away from jumpers for the most part, he had plenty of dazzling plays to back up the hype that has him ranked as the consensus No. 1 pick in the 2016 NBA Draft.
The flashiest of which, clearly, was this coast to coast dunk in the first half. In just a few short seconds, much of his next-level skill set is on display. Simmons collects a rebound, jogs up court while surveying the defense and makes a nasty in-and-out dribble move before finishing with a flush at the rim. The most impressive aspect of the play is up for debate, but it’s either the body control required for wrong-footed, off-hand finish, or the in-and-out dribble the 6’10 Australian whipped out with ease.
Simmons’ LSU Tigers spent nearly the entire game trailing Marquette’s Golden Eagles, but not for his lack of effort. As usual he was in triple-double territory with 21 points, 20 rebounds and seven assists. The freshman sensation gave his team their first and only lead of the game when he flipped a tough, right-handed layup over his head with 26 seconds to go in the game, too.
It was all for naught, though, as Simmons passed up a potential game-winning shot not once, but twice on the final possession of the game as Marquette squeaked by the Tigers 81-80.