Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell vs.76ers guard Ben Simmons Rookie of The Year race will reach an end soon, but sparks are already starting to fly in the debates surrounding the award. Simmons made a pretty strong comment about his opinions on the race. To him, there is no question who the Rookie of The Year is. It's him.
"Who would I pick? Me, 100 percent," Simmons told ESPN at the Ritz-Carlton in downtown Philadelphia on Saturday.
"I think I have been playing solid all year," he continued. "If you look at the numbers, you will see. People who know the game know."
Simmons has been adamant all season that he's a true rookie and that his one year away from the game with an injury was not an advantage. However, Mitchell doesn't see it that way. He didn't agree with Simmons' comments and made sure to let everybody know with his wardrobe choice on Tuesday.
Arrival 🙃 pic.twitter.com/RHkCNV9pmc— x - Utah Jazz (@utahjazz) April 10, 2018
Adidas has obviously made their choice in the debate and is choosing to side with Mitchell. His hoodie has the word "rookie" at the top and a description below it with a dictionary definition of the word:
"An athlete playing his or her first season as a member of a professional sports team"
This is a funny and petty response to Simmons' comments. He's saying that Simmons isn't a true rookie, because he was drafted one year earlier, but just happened to sit out for a season. Mitchell has been incredible himself and isn't going to let Simmons walk over him. However, if Adidas were going to help him out here, then they probably wanted to create a better definition for rookie.
"An athlete playing his or her first season as a member of a professional sports team" is the exact definition of a rookie. The problem is it doesn't make Mitchell's case against Simmons any better because Simmons didn't play last year. So by this definition, Simmons is a rookie and the debate is in the same place it has always been.
Maybe, Mitchell just saw all the comments about Simmons not being a true rookie and wanted to put those to bed. If he's going to win the award, then it will be a straight-up case of voters considering him the better rookie. No asterisks.
ESPN's Chris Haynes later caught up with Mitchell and asked him about the race. If the hoodie was supposed to be a message then he played coy, because he actually doesn't care about the race apparently.
"I really don't care," Mitchell told ESPN. "The biggest thing for me is that we're in the fourth seed and fighting for the third seed. If I'm worrying about individual awards, I'm giving up on my teammates and what we're trying to build here. Clearly, I'm not the one losing sleep over this. I don't care."
Donovan Mitchell wore a hoodie with the definition of a rookie on it and then said he didn't care about the Rookie of The Year race. This league is the best.