Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons ranked in SI Top 100 NBA players list

With their revamped roster, the Philadelphia 76ers are primed to be one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference this upcoming season.

And Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons, the Sixers’ two young stars, will need to help the team make the necessary steps to go deeper into the playoffs during the 2019-20 season.

Embiid and Simmons were recently ranked in Sports Illustrated’s Top 100 NBA players list for this upcoming season. Embiid, a two-time All-Star, came in at No. 7 on the list, and Simmons came in at No. 23.

Embiid’s  ranking was an improvement from SI’s list last year; he ranked No. 9 on last year’s list. The jump Embiid made in his career last season showed how dominant he could be.

For about the first half of last season, Embiid was an MVP candidate. He had 28 games where he posted at least 30 points and 10 rebounds. Embiid earned four 3rd place MVP votes, and most of his votes were for 5th place (11). Last season, he averaged a career-high 27.5 points per game and grabbed a career-high 13.6 rebounds a game.

Simmons, who was a first-time All-Star last season climbed the rankings compared to last season as well; last year, SI had him ranked No. 26.

Last season, Simmons showed more offensive development as he was more aggressive on that end of the floor. He averaged 16.9 points per game, and he shot 56.3% from the field, better than the 54.5% he shot during his rookie year.

Along with his offensive development, Simmons showed he’s a versatile defender as well. At 6-foot-10, Simmons can use his length to defend guards on the perimeter, but he can also defend forwards down low.

Though Simmons hasn’t displayed an effective jumper, he has given fans reason to believe that area of his game is developing. This summer, Simmons has made jumpers in pickup games, and he’s shown an ability to shoot off the dribble as well.

For the Sixers, Embiid and Simmons continuing to build their games will be imperative for the team’s overall success this upcoming season.

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