THURSDAY 19 October, 10am.
This is the day the Philadelphia 76ers will unveil two number one draft picks, but all of Victoria and the rest of the nation will have eyes only for one… Ben Simmons.
Breaking his year-long absence from competition ball, this will be the day Ben Simmons makes his NBA debut against Washington.
Where will you be that day? Probably “sick”, holed up in bed with nothing else to do… but watch the beginning of Ben.
The start of Simmons.
The next great Victorian in the premier arena.
It’s been an agonizing wait for the basketball community – waiting to see our next #TeamVic star enter the NBA – as we ticked down the days until the new season rolled around.
Just waiting for that first opportunity to watch Simmons take to the NBA… but now it is here after 14 months of waiting.
24 June 2016 seems like an eternity ago when we saw Simmons take his first step into the NBA spotlight on that famous night in Brooklyn… but the road towards pick one’s debut ever since has been tedious.
A foot fracture kept him out of the big show all throughout his first season on the roster… as a delayed start turned into a long-term layoff and eventually into a season-ending injury.
But that was then and even though the stakes are certainly higher now following a year of nervous anticipation… Simmons is just as keen to get out there and show what he’s now capable of doing.
Roughly a year since I arrived in Philly and some think I've stayed the same. I've had a year to learn, experience and develop my game to the point where I'm ready grab this up coming season by the throat. Looking back now I would have killed the old me on the court. Philly, it's going to be a scary sight. Let's go! 💪🏽
“Looking back now I would have killed the old me on the court,” Simmons said on Instagram recently.
It won’t be the only time his 76ers are set for prime time with a Christmas Day battle against New York at Madison Square Garden ready to tip off the traditionally spectacular day of American hoops.
He’s one of four Victorians currently lining up in the NBA in 2017/18 with Matthew Dellavedova (Milwaukee), Dante Exum (Utah) and newly signed Charlotte Hornet Mangok Mathiang set to tip off as well in October.
Delly’s Bucks will face off against Boston, Exum will head across the Midwest to vie against Denver while Charlotte looks to start this season on a strong note against Detroit.
So just 63 more days to go until Big Ben goes off once again.