- By Mitchell Northam The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Kobi Simmons didn’t play much in the pre-season opener for the Memphis Grizzlies on Monday, but made the most of his chances when he was on the court.
Simmons, a 6-foot-5 St. Francis High School graduate, scored four points and grabbed two rebounds in just nine minutes of action in the Grizzlies’ 92-84 win over the Orlando Magic.
Wearing No. 2, Simmons had a highlight reel-worthy play in the fourth quarter, when he spun around Shelvin Mack and slashed by Wesley Iwundu for an easy lay-up.
Simmons, the all-time leading scorer at St. Francis High School, signed as an undrafted free agent with the Grizzlies after playing one season for the University of Arizona. After putting his John Hancock on the contract, he bought his mom a Range Rover.
While with the Arizona Wildcats, Simmons averaged 8.7 points, 1.6 rebounds and two assists per game for the 2016-17 season. The former McDonald’s All-American scored double digits in 16 games for Arizona.
At the Grizzlies’ media day, Simmons told Grind City Media that he is named after Kobe Bryant and was a fan of the former Lakers’ star growing up, saying he “admired” his game. Simmons also told reporters that he wasn’t upset about going undrafted.
“I mean, I’m here,” Simmons said. “So, I don’t think you can be in a lot of bad spirits about that.”
Next up, Simmons and the Grizzlies will face Joel Embiid, Markelle Fultz and the 76ers on Wednesday in Philadelphia.