Atlantic Notes: Ellington, Konate, Horford, Simmons

With Wayne Ellington headed back to the Knicks, he recalls that his first stay with the team was so short that he “never put the jersey on,” relays Steve Popper of Newsday. The Mavericks sent Ellington to New York in a trade during the summer of 2014, but the Knicks shipped him to the Kings before the season started. So it doesn’t officially count as one of his eight stops during a 10-year NBA career.

Ellington is back in New York after signing a two-year deal last month with the first season fully guaranteed. Along with providing a veteran presence, Ellington will bring a much-needed 3-point threat to the Knicks, who were among the league’s worst teams from behind the arc last season.

“I’m here first and foremost to help lead a very young team,” Ellington said. “That’s one of the things (Knicks coach David Fizdale) and I spoke about, helping to lead. And of course, I’m here be a player, whether it’s starting or coming off the bench, whatever Fiz needed me to do, I’m going to be ready and prepared for it. That’s really not my main focus, whether I’m a starter or not, but I’m definitely coming in here to compete.”

There’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • The Raptors are being careful with shot-blocking specialist Sagaba Konate, who missed most of last season at West Virginia because of knee problems, writes Blake Murphy of The Athletic. Konate signed with Toronto shortly after being passed over in the draft, but hasn’t seen much on-court action in the past two months. He was held out of the Las Vegas Summer League and hasn’t participated in five-on-five scrimmages. “We feel really strong about our medical staff and what the proper sort of approach you can take to a rehabilitation project,” assistant GM Dan Tolzman said. “We’re curious to see what he can become. It’s all about getting him ready for the start of the training camp and see what he does from there.”
  • Al Horford is likely to become more of an outside shooter playing alongside Joel Embiid, predicts Rich Hofmann of The Athletic. Horford, who signed with the Sixers in free agency, took 203 3-point shots last season, but Hofmann expects that number to grow as he tries to provide more spacing for his teammates.
  • With a video circulating of Ben Simmons sinking long 3-pointers, Michael Kaskey-Blomain of CBS Sports notes that the All-Star guard’s development in that area could be critical for the Sixers‘ long-term success. Simmons, who signed a five-year extension last month, hasn’t made a 3-point shot during his first two NBA seasons.
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10 thoughts on “Atlantic Notes: Ellington, Konate, Horford, Simmons

  1. We saw this last off season and in-season in pre game shoot arounds, Ben Simmons still did not make a 3 pt fg.

    Its funny how everyone hear has the same amount as career 3pt fg made as an all star nba PG.

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      That’s only because he’s not an actual point guard just like LeBron James, even though both of them are listed as such. Simmons and LBJ are point forwards.

      • Wrong.

        Ben Simmons is the point guard not the point forward.

        The Sixers run two other forwards out there with embiid at Center and one other guard.

        If Simmons was the point forward there would be two guards out there with him.

        This year’s starting lineup looks like embiid, Horford, Tobias Harris, maybe Josh Richardson. Ben Simmons won’t be the point forward he’ll be the point guard.

        Last year they brought in Jimmy Butler after the deadline so you could say he was the small forward which he plays very often rather than off guard. He may actually be a point forward when he plays eg:in Minnesota and maybe in Miami when Dragic sits?

        What you’re doing is going by Simmons size. 6-10. Oh that means he’s a forward. That’s not the way to do it. Simmons is a point guard.

        • IslandFlava

          You nailed it my friend… don’t know why everybody keeps saying Simmons ain’t a PG, I have never seen him playing other than PG at the sixers, he is a PG just like Magic was a PG for the Lakers!

  2. As long as Ben Simmons elbow angles out to the side like he’s been doing the last few years, his percentage on threes or even any outside shooting will be lower than he’s capable of.

    Any successful shooter knows the elbow has to be straight up and down towards the rim.

    Kind of unrelated but I’ll mention it here even though nobody cares but, just watching a shooting video of Willie cauley-stein and I tweeted him back saying he’s got too much Palm on the ball. There has to be a little air space in there and the ball really should rest more on the fingers than the hand itself.

    Just a little air gap in there and the center of your hand should not touch the ball at all. Same as dribbling.

    Another thing Willie cauley-stein does to hinder his percentage is he has the ball on the side of his head when he shoots, rather than straight out in front of his face, or a little higher.

    He looks good in warm ups but in the game that shot is not going to fall at a very high percentage.

    It’s amazing with all the shooting coaches what teams have that guys like Simmons and cauley-stein still shoot the way they shoot and they’re less than perfect form. You can practice all day long but with crummy form you’ll have to wait till age 35 to hit that shot consistently because you’ve done it twenty thousand times.

    Yes there’s exceptions to the rule but generally that’s the scoop.

  3. MDBigGame

    People are doing too much hand-wringing over Al Horford’s fit with Embiid. They’re minutes are going to be be staggered. They’ll start together, but likely only play 12 minutes per game together. Horford is there to stop the bleeding when Embiid sits

    • Al Horford is a huge loss for the Celtics and a great signing by the Sixers. Just one of those guys that brings a ton of professionalism, experience, and ability to whoever he plays for. Tremendous asset for any team.

    • He’s actually good with both hands around the rim. Very talented player.

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