Ben Simmons headlines Australia's NBA crew

Justin Chadwick
·2-min read

At least seven Australians are set to feature during the 2020-21 NBA season, with Ben Simmons the leading chance to walk away with a Championship ring.

The Simmons-led Philadelphia 76ers are equal fifth favourites to win the title, behind defending champions LA Lakers, Brooklyn Nets, LA Clippers, and Milwaukee Bucks.

The 76ers are now coached by legendary NBA figure Doc Rivers after parting ways with Brett Brown.

Simmons, who averaged 16.4 points per game during the 2019-20 regular season, is rated as one of the brightest young stars of the NBA but is yet to reach his full potential.

If Rivers can get the best out of the former No.1 pick, then the talent-laden 76ers could be a force to be reckoned with.

Other Australians set to feature this season are Patty Mills (San Antonio Spurs), Joe Ingles (Utah Jazz), Matthew Dellavedova (Cleveland Cavaliers), Dante Exum (Cleveland Cavaliers), Aron Baynes (Toronto Raptors), and the No.18 pick from the 2020 draft Josh Green (Dallas Mavericks).

The number of Australians could rise to eight if Thon Maker wins the final spot on Cleveland's list or Will Magnay earns an upgrade.

The season gets underway on Wednesday AEDT.

Magnay recently signed a two-way deal with the New Orleans Pelicans, but it's expected the Brisbane-born centre will spend the bulk of his time with the club's NBA G League affiliate Erie BayHawks.

Jonah Bolden, who played three games for the Phoenix Suns in 2020 after 48 with the 76ers, is expected to continue his career in Europe after failing to land at another NBA club.

Spanish outfit Real Madrid is circling Bolden after American Anthony Randolph suffered a season-ending injury.

Boomers swingman Ryan Broekhoff is on the lookout for a new home after being waived by the 76ers earlier this month.

Green is the newest Australian to arrive in the NBA, and he's already earned praise from Dallas Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle.

The 20-year-old averaged 5.7 points and two assists in his three pre-season games, and Carlisle praised Green's work ethic and no-nonsense attitude.

Baynes averaged a career-high 11.5 points per game for the Phoenix Suns last season, but was traded to Toronto on a two-year deal in November.

The 34-year-old joins a talented Toronto line-up that is ranked 11th favourite for the title.

Cavaliers duo Dellavedova and Exum face a much bleaker season, with their team rated a strong chance to finish last in the Eastern conference.

But it could have been vastly different for Dellavedova, with the Lebron James-led Lakers considering signing the Australian last month before deciding against it.

Injury-plagued Exum, the No.5 pick from the 2014 NBA draft, appears primed for a breakout campaign after averaging 15 points and five assists during his two pre-season games.