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Nash: 'I don't care' if Simmons ever takes jump shot

David Dow / National Basketball Association / Getty

Ben Simmons' inability to space the floor made for a problematic fit with the Philadelphia 76ers, but Brooklyn Nets head coach Steve Nash couldn't care less since the former No. 1 overall pick brings so much more to the table.

"Very unique," Nash told reporters Wednesday of Simmons' skillset, according to ESPN's Nick Friedell. "That's what makes Ben great. That's why I don't care if he ever shoots a jump shot for the Brooklyn Nets.

"He's welcome to, but that is not what makes him special and not what we need. He's a great complement to our team, and he's an incredible basketball player because of his versatility."

Simmons' playmaking and defensive versatility have been his two defining traits. The 6-foot-11 guard averaged 7.7 assists over four seasons in Philadelphia, maximizing his height advantage to see over the top of defenses. He also registered a league-leading 2.1 steals in 2019-20 and was runner-up for Defensive Player of the Year the following campaign.

Nash hasn't decided where he'll play Simmons, but the latter is prepared for anything the Nets throw his way.

"I'll play wherever the team needs me to play, whatever helps," Simmons said. "I can guard 1 to 5, play 1 to 5. I think it's just one of those things where we have so many different talents on this team you could put me anywhere to help get points, get stops, whatever it is. ... I love playing the 5, I don't mind."

Brooklyn begins preseason action Monday at home against the 76ers.

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