Trae Young was on JJ Redick’s podcast and the question about Ben Simmons’ pass in the second round last year came up:

I died laughing when Trae said there was no other feeling like going into the stadium where the fans boo their own team while the camera pans to JJ cracking up. Growing up with it, it just feels like second nature at this point that I feel like it surprises me when players are surprised. If you play bad we will boo you. If you come out and play good we’ll cheer you. Simple math if you ask me.

I haven’t watched this Simmons play since last summer. It’s like a player losing the Super Bowl who can’t watch the game until six months later. This play kickstarted the end for Ben Simmons in Philadelphia. Lets exorcise some demons:

So I agree with Trae’s breakdown of events more than I do with JJ. He knew the foul was coming and Trae did a great job of faking like he was going to hack him. There’s no way a guy with the elite court vision of Simmons thought that was John Collins or Clint Capela rotating after he spun off of Gallinari. Here he is scanning the defensive setup:

Takes another dribble and is scanning the floor:

Here he collects himself, ready to go up and there is nobody around him. Capela look like he knows it’s an easy two and is ready to head back for the next possession:

Once he collected himself he saw Trae slide over, assumed he was going to hack him, saw Matisse baseline and got himself off the hook. If you re-watch Matisse you can see he raises his hands quickly like he was surprised to even get the ball.

I typically agree with JJ’s basketball takes, but this wasn’t one of them. Around three minutes JJ says he doesn’t think Philly fans appreciated the things Ben did well which couldn’t be further from the truth. That’s all people who defended Ben for so long had to hang their hat on. They were able to hold their own in an argument because he was such a brilliant passer and defender that some nights it would make up for the lack of shooting. Obviously how things played out with Ben I feel like non-Sixers media people don’t remember a time when people would defend Ben as much as they would Embiid.