Cleveland, December 1: Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James said Philadelphia 76ers rookie Ben Simmons has the opportunity to be better than him.
Simmons is looking like everything he was advertised to be after he was drafted as the number one pick in 2016, averaging 18.7 points, 9.5 rebounds and 7.2 assists just 20 games into his young career.
Four-time MVP and three-time NBA champion James knew Simmons was going to be special. He knew it when the Australian was at James' Skills Camp at 17-years-old.
After waking up at four in the morning to work out with Dwyane Wade and himself, James saw something special in the youngster.
"You have an opportunity to be better than me," James told Simmons, via Sports Illustrated. "But you can't skip steps. You have to do the work."
Simmons has put in the work to get to where he is on the basketball court. He has played at the highest level for years and it shows in the way he plays. His vision on the court and his ability to move with agility despite his listed 6-10 frame is matched by few.
Already compared with James and Michael Jordan, the former added: "Part of his greatness is that he wants others to be just as great."
Simmons is coming off a career-high night after posting 31 points and 18 rebounds in the 76ers' win over the Washington Wizards.