MEMPHIS Brooklyn Nets Swingman Ben Simmons One of the whistles that he was given “bulls —” after” a number of times. 134-124 loss To the Memphis Grizzlies Monday night, we noted that “refs also make mistakes”
Simmons fouled out in the third of three regular season games. While he was annoyed by many calls, his sixth foul, which was called by J.T., was the one that caused him the most fury. Orr left regulation time at 3:52 Guard the Grizzlies Ja Morant Slowly let the ball roll on the ground, then collected it and waited for Simmons' move. Orr whistled the end of Simmons' night when Simmons got closer to Morant, who was standing just a bit over the half-court line. Both Simmons and Steve Nash, the Nets' coach, were stunned.
Simmons stated after the game, “I just witnessed the play.” “It wasn’t a foul. [Orr] Called it a foul. It was a mistake. It's frustrating because the game is in the fourth quarter and it's physical. It's not the NBA. It's not college. Some people will be hit, some people will bleed. This is basketball.
Simmons also received a technical foul during the first quarter. He claimed that he did not receive any explanations from officials.
Simmons stated, “There was no explanation.”[Orr] I didn't have any comments. Same with the technical foul. He claimed that Ja had a technical and he had to give me one because I had said something. It wasn't malicious. I didn't think it was malicious. People are human. I didn’t yell at him and I didn’t call him anything. I said it was a bulls—call, which it was. Let me get out of this mess. I don't wish to be fined.”
Morant explained to reporters how he lured Simmons to foul out. Simmons made a similar play several years ago that Morant learned from.
Morant stated, “If you'll want to dig up a play – I think my rookie season I was in Philly — the same situation occurred like that vs. Ben” “I looked at Coach to get the play. (Simmons ran through the ball, got a steal and went to dunk. It was that instant I realized it. Once I had seen him, I was rolling the ball. I was at half. [court]Coach looked at me and I saw him trying to say “Oh yes.” So I knew I had him. He was going press up, and I was just going force the ref make the call.”
Simmons admitted that he was confused by the way officials called the game, given the physical style of play for which the Grizzlies have become famous.
Simmons stated that one way you can expect a team's physical play and then you play defense and play the exact same way, physical. However, it only goes one way in terms fouls. But that's basketball. “You need to adjust, and I don’t think that we adjusted well.”
Simmons finished the night with 7 ppg, 8 assists and 3 rebounds. He also had a steal and 5 turnovers. The 26-year old Simmons took a step back after almost a year of missing his rhythm.
Nash spoke out about what he believes is the biggest problem facing Simmons right now, saying “I think Rust.” He's not played much basketball. He's trying to get his game, his confidence and the familiarity back. It has been 18 months, so it's been a long time since he was active. It's very difficult for anyone who's ever played the game.
Nash expressed his belief that Simmons will face “painful times”, but that he remains positive that Simmons will make it through them. Nash reiterated his previous statements, stating that Simmons needs to be more aggressive offensively. He believes this will make Simmons' game better.
Nets star Kevin Durant He said that he did not believe Simmons should be called for the last foul, but he also knows that calls often even out over the course a game.
Durant said, “I didn’t believe that one was foul, but it’s what it is.” “Ben is a veteran of this league so trusts himself, and we trust him. It's about bouncing back the next game.”
Nets guard Kyrie Irving The Nets need to have faith in Simmons' professionalism, and support him through the mental hurdle of foul trouble. Simmons fouled out in 13 minutes of preseason play earlier this month.
Irving stated that the relationship they have built is based on holding each other up to a high standard and believing that we are capable of doing special things together nightly, but that a lot of it was mental. It's a lot about pushing yourself to do what you think you can, especially after an injury.