Taffy Brodesser-Akner's profile of Ben Simmons is a story of a young man from Australia who played college basketball at LSU and is expected to become the NBA's No. 1 draft pick Thursday. Here are five things to know about Simmons:
• Simmons' father, Dave Simmons, is a native of the Bronx who moved to Australia to play professional basketball. Growing up in Australia, Ben played against 12-year-olds when he was just 7. He moved to the United States to play at Montverde Academy in Florida as a high school sophomore so he could get noticed and, eventually, get drafted into the NBA.
• Most of Simmons' accent is gone, but you can hear it in some words, like draft, which he pronounces drahhhft.
• From the moment he arrived at LSU, everyone wanted to get cozy with Simmons. "Hey, man, do you need anything?" they'd ask. No, he did not. Simmons even has a rule for meeting girls: "I have to talk to the person first. If I'm going to talk to the person and date the person, I'll have to go up to them. So if they're like, 'Hey, what's up?' I'm like, 'Ugh.'"
• Simmons shares an agent with LeBron James and thinks of the Cavs star as a big brother: "If I ever need advice, he gives it to me." But Simmons says on the court it's all business: "I'm not looking up to these guys while I'm playing them, no. I'm going at them. It's a job, and I want to beat them every time I step on the floor."