The best way to silence the critics?
Let your game do the talking.
That's exactly what Ben Simmons did for the Philadelphia 76ers on Tuesday, dropping a career-high 17 assists in the win over the Detroit Pistons. The best player on the floor from start to finish, Simmons controlled the entire game and surgically picked apart the Pistons from seemingly every angle.
Perhaps the best aspect of his game is the otherworldly passing ability as Simmons ranks among the very best in the world. Given he's never had more assists in an NBA game, there's a case to be made that his one-man show against the Pistons was the best game of his career.
Here are five of the top stats to know from his vintage performance.
42 points assisted
Of the 17 dimes dropped by Simmons on Tuesday, a whopping eight of them went for 3-pointers.
That means the Aussie assisted on 42 of the team's 125 points, the most he's ever assisted on in a single game. Combined with the 16 points that he scored on his own and Simmons accounted for 46% of Philadelphia's offence.
Here's a breakdown of Philadelphia's points:
- 42 - assisted by Simmons
- 16 - scored by Simmons
- 67 - all others
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That's how long it took Simmons to single-handedly take over the game. Trailing 11-10 following a Derrick Rose floater with just over five minutes left in the opening frame, Simmons racked up assists on four straight possessions to the tune of 11 points.
11 points in 94 seconds.
It won't quite go down in NBA history like Tracy McGrady's '13 points in 35 seconds' or Reggie Miller's '8 points in 9 seconds', but it's not too shabby either.
7 assists to Tobias Harris
The biggest beneficiary to all of that wizardry passing?
The forward led all scorers with 35 points on 14-21 shooting with seven of his made shots coming directly off passes from Simmons. Entering Tuesday's game, Harris had been averaging just over two made shots per game off of assists from Simmons.
Here's a breakdown of who was on the receiving end of all 17 of the Aussie's assists.
24 career triple-doubles
This was the second triple-double of the season for Simmons and the 24th of his career, moving him into a tie with Draymond Green and Elgin Baylor for the 16th-most in NBA history.
MORE: Who is next for Simmons on all-time trip-dub list?
This marked the 190th game of his career. The only two players in NBA history with more triple-doubles through that many games are Oscar Robertson and Magic Johnson.
1 lucky fan
The Sixers are playing on Christmas Day in the states and there's no better way to ring in the holiday spirit than spreading some holiday cheer.
That's exactly what Simmons did prior to the start of the second half as he took some time to meet with one young fan who went to the game holding up a sign that he simply wanted to meet the All-Star Aussie.
Wholesome #content.#PhilaUnite pic.twitter.com/6J85vTXXA9- Philadelphia 76ers (@sixers) December 24, 2019
Of course, Simmons and the 76ers have a big game on the horizon as they play host to the 27-4 Milwaukee Bucks as part of the NBA quintuple-header on Christmas.
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