clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Blazers’ Anfernee Simons Mentioned Among Impressive Second-Year Players

New, comments

Trail Blazers guard Anfernee Simons dazzled in his three Summer League performances.

2019 Las Vegas Summer League - Portland Trail Blazers v Utah Jazz Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images

The Trail BlazersNBA Summer League stint ended in the consolation round, but that didn’t prevent second-year guard Anfernee Simons from impressing during his time in Las Vegas. Through three games, the former IMG Academy standout averaged 22 points per game on 56 percent shooting from the field. Thanks to those exploits, Simons earned a spot on Sports Illustrated’s list of impressive second-year players.

On the list compiled by Sports Illustrated’s Jeremy Woo, Simons’ outbursts on offense earned him a mention.

The 20-year-old combo guard was the 24th pick in last year’s draft after making the leap directly from a postgraduate year, but it’s safe to say right now that had he waited a year (and assuming steady progression), he’d likely have ended up in the 2019 lottery had he chosen to go to college. Simons’ quickness off the dribble, clean trigger from outside and knack for shot-making has been that evident.

Woo went on to explain that Simons’ fit inside Portland’s system could produce earlier-than-expected results.

The bigger question in my mind isn’t whether Simons will be a good NBA player—I think he’s well on his way—but whether he can really help Portland this season. He’s still skinny, and surely, he’ll face stiffer tests than the Jazz’s summer league team. His best long-term role may still be as a scoring-oriented second-unit guard. Fortunately for him, that’s a job the Blazers are looking to fill. If Simons can hand in productive minutes behind Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum (and he’s tall enough to play alongside either), he could give Portland an extra gear off the bench. It might be too much to ask this soon, but at some point down the line, he could be a major factor. Color me impressed.

Simons appeared in 20 regular season games as a rookie. He recorded averages of 3.8 points and 0.7 assists during those outings.

You can read Woo’s complete post at Sports Illustrated.