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Inside Hoops: Ben Simmons Breaks Foot in Nikes

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Philadelphia 76ers rookie and No. 1 pick Ben Simmons fractured his foot during practice on Friday. (photo by Kim Raff)


A few days ago I wrote this post:

Insider Ties: The Misleading Hype of Sneaker Technology

In this post I made this statement, “A high top shoe can prevent a player from rolling an ankle, but research also shows that most rolled ankles occur due to landing on another players foot, slipping, or incorrect placement on the floor while running. Unfortunately there isn’t a shoe designed that can minimize the damage of any of these actions.”

Now why would I make this title “Ben Simmons Breaks Foot in Nikes”?

It’s obviously click bait.

I don’t really believe that Ben Simmons broke his foot because of his shoes. I could have easily used this title: BEN SIMMONS IS THE NEXT MICHAEL JORDAN. Then I could have drawn the parallel to MJ wearing Nike shoes and breaking his foot after his rookie season while being the young leader of a struggling NBA franchise.

The problem is this doesn’t allow for a discussion on the performance of footwear in the NBA and how the perception of footwear by sneaker lovers is shaped primarily by their love of the brand. Do you want to know the real reason Ben Simmons injured his foot? Look at the title of this article:

Sixers rookie Ben Simmons has put on 33 pounds of muscle

The article was written 3 days ago. This is a guy that less than 3 months ago weighed in at around 215lbs. This means that he averaged about 10lbs a month of weight gain. In the article above regarding “Misleading Hype”, I discussed fitness and flexibility as the only real way to prevent rolling an ankle. Taping can help to stabilize the ankle, but when the foot lands awkwardly there isn’t any thing stopping the foot from flexing. If you add to this the weight gain, you have to wonder what in the hell were the 76ers training staff doing in this process? The league is shifting to a wide open offense. This kid wasn’t going to get a lot of contact, even in the post as there aren’t any real physical specimens in the East to bump him around. Lightweight, lanky, lean players are dominating the game. LeBron is an anomaly and Ben Simmons should consider how Kobe Bryant bulked up one season and immediately dropped 20 pounds the following season in 07-08.

The 76ers trainers should take an L on this. Nike didn’t have anything to do with the injury. Just like adidas shoes don’t have anything to do with Derrick Rose. Just like Tim Duncan wore Nike and adidas to win rings. Kobe wore Nike and adidas to win rings. Magic Johnson wore Converse to win rings and Hakeem wore Etonics! In other words, don’t believe stupid ass titles on blog posts and wear what you like, because placebos do work.