Dwight Howard has described new Philadelphia teammate Ben Simmons as a “young LeBron” while incoming shooter Seth Curry says he and the Australian talent will be the perfect match at the new-look 76ers.
Journeyman Curry has arrived from Dallas along with veteran forward Howard, Danny Green and Australian Ryan Broekhoff to give jaded 76ers fans fresh hope of a deep NBA playoffs run.
Howard won a championship alongside LeBron James in the Florida bubble earlier this year and suggests he’ll enjoy a similar experience with 24-year-old Simmons next season.
“Ben Simmons is a young LeBron … I love the way he plays. I love how unselfish he is, and how mean he can be to other teams, and that’s important,” Howard said.
“When you have your point guard coming down, dunking on people, flexing, getting big rebounds, talking trash, doing all those things, it drives you to want to be better.
“He has an opportunity to be one of the greatest to ever play the game, and I’m glad I have the opportunity to actually give him some things that can help him along the way.”
Curry, younger brother of two-time league MVP Steph and son-in-law of new 76ers’ coach Doc Rivers, boasts a 44 per cent career three-point shooting record.
Critics are split on whether All-Stars Simmons and Joel Embiid can work together on the same team, but Curry is thrilled to join them.
“They just go in the paint and they are willing passers, they’re unselfish, so a guy like myself can complement those guys really well as far as spreading the floor,” Curry said.
“I feel like me and him (Simmons) are a perfect match in the sense that he’s a bigger ball-handler who can make plays and defend multiple positions.”
Broekhoff, himself a 40 per cent shooter from deep, was picked up as a free agent this week after two years with Dallas and should also benefit in the same way Curry hopes to at his new club.
“When he (Simmons) gets downhill, nobody can really stay in front of him one-on-one … so that’s where guys like myself and Danny (Green) and other guys we brought in can help him out,” Curry said.
The season tips off on December 22.