Over the weekend, Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons made sure we know where he stands when it comes to this year's Rookie of the Year race.
"Who would I pick? Me, 100 percent," Simmons said in a recent interview with ESPN. "I think I have been playing solid all year. If you look at the numbers, you will see. People who know the game know." When asked if any rookies impressed Simmons this season, he answered “none.”
Utah Jazz rookie Donovan Mitchell, Simmons' only real competition for the award, took exception with Simmons' blind spot, and the two stars have been beefing ever since. First, Mitchell tweeted a Waka Flocka Flame GIF in response to the slight from Simmons.
And Tuesday night, he showed up to the his team's game against the Golden State Warriors wearing a hoodie with the definition of the word "rookie" printed across the front. It was an obvious reference to Simmons, who sat out the entire 2016-17 with an injury, but still had the benefit of being around the team and learning the ebbs and flows of life in the NBA. Mitchell later explained how Simmons' extra year gives him an advantage.
Donovan Mitchell’s hoodie though lmao 👀 pic.twitter.com/VFbeugz77i— Complex Sports (@ComplexSports) April 10, 2018
Detroit Pistons forward (and amateur comedian) Blake Griffin, who also sat out his first season with the L.A. Clippers due to injury and won Rookie of the Year the following season in 2010-11, chimed in with an appropriate joke.
For what it's worth, Simmons didn't seem too bothered by the hoodie.
Simmons addresses the Mitchell hoodie postgame: "If his argument is I'm not a rookie, if that's the only argument he has, I'm in pretty good shape then."— Kyle Neubeck (@KyleNeubeck) April 11, 2018
The 2018 NBA Awards will be presented on June 25.