Anfernee Simons

Anfernee Simons eager to shake off sophomore slump, get fresh restart

Anfernee Simons eager to shake off sophomore slump, get fresh restart

Trail Blazers fans know the athleticism, raw offensive talent, and high-flying dunk capabilities that second-year guard Anfernee Simons brings.

This is a young man who can score-- There’s no doubt about that.

A recent social media post from an account dubbed ‘Timeout’ made the rounds on Instagram and Twitter saying that Simons could be the best-kept secret.

Well, Anthony Simons is indeed a secret.

But for Anfrenee Simons, he knows what he can bring to the Blazers. He is using this restart to get better and continue to learn from the Trail Blazers backcourt star duo of Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum. 

In his first media interview since the resumption of the 2019-20 season, the 21-year-old shared his personal goals for the restart during a Zoom call Tuesday.  

“I think I’m in pretty good shape,” Simons said. “I think we did a good job of individual workouts and kind of getting our conditioning up and obviously the first couple of practices helped out a lot with my conditioning... I’m just taking this as a good opportunity to get better. Come into practice and compete against Dame and CJ. Challenge them and help them challenge me as well. I’m coming in trying to work on different aspects of my game that will help the team win in different situations.”    

[Listen to the latest Talking’ Blazers Podcast with hosts Channing Frye and Dan Sheldon].

As NBA Fans around the world learn more about Ant, Trail Blazers fans have already had a glimpse at the future of the Trail Blazers.

April 10, 2019 was a breakout game the Trail Blazers knew was in their rookie all along. Simons notched a career-high in all three major categories. He finished with 37 points, nine assists, and six rebounds . 

It was the then 19-year-old who led the Blazers to a thrilling 136-131 comeback win over the Kings after being down by as many as 28 points.

Simons’ fellow rookie Gary Trent Jr. added 19 points on 8-of-19 shooting.

Now, as the two work on their game in the Orlando bubble together, Trent Jr. shared some insight on Simons’ character.

“Ant’s a great player. He’s a hard worker. Any time he’s on the floor, any shot he shoots I think is going in. I work with him day in and day out. Like you said, we were rookies together, so I’ve seen his work ethic from day one. He’s a hard worker. He’s gonna come in and prove himself… So, if he does have a big game, I’m not surprised at all… He works on his craft,” Trent Jr. said.

[RELATED]: NBCSNW to air Trail Blazers scrimmages from Orlando, beginning July 23

Both Trent Jr. and Simons could see extra minutes coming their way now that the Trail Blazers are without small forward Trevor Ariza.

“I think the biggest thing is with Trevor being out, that opens up perimeter minutes,” Blazers Coach Terry Stotts said Tuesday. 

Coach Stotts, who keeps the Blazers rotation close to the vest, will look like along with expected minutes for each player close to the vest, added that he is reluctant to say that Simons will get be one of those players to earn extra minutes, but Stotts did say, “There’s going to be opportunity for someone, whether it’s Ant, Gary, Mario [Hezonja], for those minutes to be taken advantage of.”

But at the same time: 

Perimeter minutes may be hard to come by.

“I’m approaching this as every game is a playoff game, a must win game. The rotation will be a little shorter. I think Dame and CJ’s minutes will be extended, so that kind of takes away from some of the opportunities that are gonna be available on the perimeter, especially at the 1 and the 2.”

[RELATED]: Trail Blazer Coach Terry Stotts expects every game to be 'must-win' in Orlando 

Even if social media outlets believe Simons is one of the best-kept secrets in the league, there were high expectations in Rip City for the second-year player.

Simons can score at ease and has an impressive offensive skill set-- we know that. But this season, his game was inconsistent and his confidence seemed to waver at times. He has also noted he is still a work in progress on the defensive end too.

Simon's strength is, undoubtedly, scoring and when he wasn’t doing that this season it made fans question the expectations placed on him in the offseason.

In 65 games played during the 2019-20 season, Simons averaged 8.8 points on 40.2 percent shooting in 21.5 minutes of work. He shot 33.8 percent from behind the arc and 82.6 from the free throw line, while adding 2.3 rebounds and 1.5 assists.

Just like it’s no secret that Simons didn’t have the season many had hoped for, he feels that this restart could ultimately be the fresh start he needs and wants.

That time off is obviously kind of the [same] time of the offseason. I got time to get a little bit better. Obviously it was quarantine, but when we came back for those couple months of working out – it’s kind of re-locking in and working on things that you need to work on that obviously you struggled with in the season before everything happened. So, I think coming in now it’s time to focus on the things that you struggled at and come back in and refocus on that and work hard at that. -- Trail guard Anfernee Simons

With that confidence, focus, and ability to lock in again, Simons could potentially prove to those national social media outlets during this restart – the secret is out -- IT’S ANFERNEE SIMONS; get it right.  

Some reasons the Trail Blazers signed a point guard rather than a small forward

Some reasons the Trail Blazers signed a point guard rather than a small forward

The Trail Blazers signed a replacement player for Trevor Ariza Monday -- point guard Jaylen Adams -- and a whole lot of Portland fans seem upset about it.

Ariza, who opted out of going to Orlando for the NBA’s resumption of the season, is a small forward. Why a point guard? Who will play small forward? And what about bringing former Trail Blazers such as Allen Crabbe or Evan Turner back to fill that spot? Or what about signing some of the “name” players who are out there?

Well, I think I can help you with some answers here, based on logic and the experience of being around this franchise for a few days.

Let me make some points and you can pick out what you need. First, the small forward position:

  • The idea of Crabbe or Turner is a non-starter. Turner is still on Minnesota’s roster. He played in only 19 games this season and just one after Jan. 1.

  • Crabbe played in 37 games this season and started just once. He had a miserable season. And he's one of those players who seems to need the ball a lot, which isn't going to happen here.

  • Those “name” players people are talking about? The likes of Iman Shumpert and Gerald Green? Shumpert isn’t good enough to help and Green is hurt.

  • Veteran players who finished last season without a team would be going to Orlando in search of long-term employment -- a chance to showcase for a deal next season. That means they’re going to want playing time and if they don’t get it, that will be a problem.

  • There has never been a time I can remember where team chemistry and togetherness will be tested like it will be in Orlando. Players will have very little freedom of movement and contact with family or friends. Their stress level is likely to be off the charts. Adding players with excess baggage is not something a lot of teams will be willing to do. Not sure the Trail Blazers -- or many of the other teams in Orlando -- want to take chances with players who might be a disruption.

  • If this team gets eliminated quickly in the seeding games, which is a possibility, don’t be surprised if the team’s core players see their minutes cut down so that the coaches and front office can see the others play. They certainly wouldn’t be interested in watching over-the-hill vets looking for a contract from another team.

  • There has been an open transaction window since June 23 and if a veteran player hasn’t been signed by now, odds are he’s not valued by any of the 22 teams.

And now for Adams and the reasons for signing him:

  • Again, if the Trail Blazers can’t hang in the race for the final playoff berth, I would expect Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum’s minutes to be drastically cut -- or see them even shut down. Why risk injury if the team is out of the running? If that’s the case, help is needed at point guard.

  • I don’t expect Anfernee Simons to play 48 minutes in the absence of Dame and CJ, so Adams would be there to back up.

  • There is nothing wrong with getting an early look at one of the G-League’s best players prior to next season.

  • Adams will also help lighten the load for the starters during the three-week camp leading up to the seeding games.

And so, who do I expect to see playing small forward, with Ariza absent?:

  • Depending on matchups, I would expect Carmelo Anthony to get those minutes, alongside Zach Collins and either Jusuf Nurkic or Hassan Whiteside. I would also expect Gary Trent to get time at small forward, where he has spent time previously this season.

  • The league seems to grow more positionless each season and all sorts of big and small lineups are possible with what this team has on its roster.

  • Terry Stotts likes to stick with a tidy rotation in the postseason -- eight players, if possible. I think those eight would obviously include Lillard, McCollum, Collins, Nurkic, Whiteside, Anthony, Trent and Simons -- with Nassir Little and Mario Hezonja used for specific matchups. There is not much room there for additions unless somebody else opts out.

Will any Trail Blazers take advantage of NBA's new social justice policy?

Will any Trail Blazers take advantage of NBA's new social justice policy?

The NBA plans to resume the 2019-20 season in Orlando, Florida at the end of July but not without some concerns from the players.

Besides the coronavirus pandemic that shut down the season to begin with reaching new heights, especially in Florida, some players are concerned that the resumption of the NBA season will serve as a distraction away from the Black Lives Matter movement against systemic racism of black people and police brutality. 

Then Saturday, Shams Charania of The Athletic reported that the NBA and NBAPA "are planning to allow players to replace the last name on their jerseys with statement[s] on social justice" with initial details of the plan being sent to players that evening.

As of now, the only Trail Blazer that has opted out of the bubble is starting small forward Trevor Ariza who will sit out the remainder of the season to instead commit to a one-month visitation window with his young son.

[RELATED]: Trevor Ariza will not join the Trail Blazers when NBA restarts-- here's why

That leaves the question of if any Trail Blazers plan to take advantage of this new policy? 

Damian Lillard was seen protesting in Portland with Black Lives Matter on June 4th. Later that week, Lillard joined Sportscenter and discussed committing to the bubble during the nationwide protests.

"As far as the racial injustice, I think that's where a lot of the struggle is for a lot of athletes," Lillard said. "I think our league is made up of so many African American players. And a lot of our hearts are with our people; our minds are with our people. And we feel like we should be a part of that fight. And that's where the struggle is; I think that's where you're hearing a lot of guys kinda coming out, saying maybe we should be focused on that instead of worrying about going back in and jumping into the season."

[Listen to the latest Talkin’ Blazers Podcast with hosts NBA Champion Channing Frye and Emmy Award winner Dan Sheldon]

But Lillard also sees the benefits of returning to the court which is why he's willing to take the risk of going to Orlando. 

"I can only speak for myself -- but I think it goes for other guys as well -- we are the financial support for our families and for a lot of our community. We bring a lot of that financial responsibility to support black businesses in black communities. So it makes a lot of sense for us [to return], from that standpoint."

Lillard wasn't the only one to join protests. Nassir Little, Rodney Hood, Gary Trent Jr. and Anfernee Simons all also protested in the Portland area.

[RELATED]: Nassir Little, Rodney Hood, Gary Trent, Jr. attend Black Lives Matter protest in Portland

Hoodie and Little along with hundreds of other protestors were chanting “Say her name” referencing to Breonna Taylor who was wrongfully shot multiple times and killed in a police raid of her home two months ago.

Perhaps one of them would put her name on their jersey, which appears to be the plan of Las Vega Aces small forward Angel McCoughtry when the WNBA starts next month, per her Instagram.

View this post on Instagram

I will be playing this upcoming @wnba and I am looking forward to continue to fight social injustice issues while playing and supporting front line workers. ⠀ ⠀ I am currently working with the @lvaces and @wnba to use our voices, our uniforms, and our sport to continue to impact and create real change. I am creating a petition (LINK IN BIO) to allow players the ability to put the FIRST & LAST NAME of HUMAN BEINGS that who have been injured or KILLED in incidents involving POLICE BRUTALITY! Even Front line workers during the pandemic The goal is also to create a relationship with the families of who’s name the athlete has chosen. This is a way to use our platform to be a helping hand during these trying times. Silence is an ally for EVIL and when sports resume WE WILL NOT BE SILENT. ⠀ ⠀ #SayTheirNames ⠀ #blacklivesmatter ⠀ #thetimeisnow

A post shared by Angel McCoughtry #35 (@mccoughtry) on

"I am currently working with the @lvaces and @wnba to use our voices, our uniforms, and our sport to continue to impact and create real change," wrote the first overall pick in the 2009 WNBA Draft. "I am creating a petition (LINK IN BIO) to allow players the ability to put the FIRST & LAST NAME of HUMAN BEINGS that who have been injured or KILLED in incidents involving POLICE BRUTALITY! Even Front line workers during the pandemic

"The goal is also to create a relationship with the families of who’s name the athlete has chosen. This is a way to use our platform to be a helping hand during these trying times.
Silence is an ally for EVIL and when sports resume WE WILL NOT BE SILENT."

We'll have to wait and see if any Blazers will follow her lead, but the league will let them do so if any of them so desire. 

Trail Blazers clinch 3rd spot in 2019: A crazy game, a crazy night!

Trail Blazers clinch 3rd spot in 2019: A crazy game, a crazy night!

It was the 19-year-old Anfernee Simons who led Portland to a thrilling 136-131 comeback win over the Kings after the Trail Blazers were down by as many as 28 points in the second quarter in the last regular season game of 2019.

This game was not only wild all on its own, it also had crazy playoff implications.

Christian, you could make a lot of money on this game…

With homecourt advantage already clinched for Portland, Blazers head coach Terry Stotts rested his starters and played guys who rarely saw major minutes.

It was also Fan Appreciation night as Trail Blazers fans were able to get a glimpse at the future.

During the starting lineup introductions, fans gave the Blazers rookies the most love with the loudest applause.

[Listen to the latest Talkin' Blazers Podcast with hosts NBA Champion Channing Frye and Emmy Award winner Dan Sheldon.]

So, just to jog your memory: Because Portland defeated Sacramento in this game on April 10, 2019 and then Denver also beat Minnesota that night, the Trail Blazers then finished the season as the third seed and thus faced the six-seeded Thunder.  (The rest is history with that waving-good series.)

But, the chances of playing the Jazz were much higher than playing OKC earlier in the night when both the Blazers and Nuggets were down by double digits in the first half of their games.

Re-watching this Trail Blazers Classic Game Sunday night, it was fun to see Portland’s young squad get so much run and to see some familiar faces who are no longer in a Trail Blazers uni.

The Blazers were down by 25 at halftime, but Portland won while using just six players behind Anfernee Simons’ career-high 37 points.  

Simons averaged 3.8 points in 7.1 minutes per game his rookie season.

[RELATED]: Fans got a glimpse at the future of Rip City in Anfernee Simons 

In his first career start, Simons not only finished with 37 points, he connected on seven three-point field goals and added six rebounds. He also played all 48 minutes as did Gary Trent Jr. and Jake Layman who each scored 19 points apiece.

During Simons’ two years in the league, Damian Lillard has taken the young guard under his wing. During the 2019 regular-season finale, Simons listened to his mentor’s advice.

Dame told me to be aggressive the whole game, so that’s what I did. -- Anfernee Simons said postgame

Skal Labissiere finished with 15 rebounds and scored 29, while Meyers Leonard added 19 points and 11 rebounds.

Simons also dished out nine assists on the night. One of which was this beautiful outlet pass to Leonard:

Leonard made sure to give props once again to Simons for rewarding Meyers for running the floor.

Leonard also acknowledged that this game had plenty of hammer opportunities.

The only other Trail Blazer who played was Zach Collins, who scored 13 points in the 13 minutes.

How to watch: Trail Blazers clinch three-seed behind Anfernee Simons' 37 points

How to watch: Trail Blazers clinch three-seed behind Anfernee Simons' 37 points

It was a very unique game for-the-ages.

Thanks to rookie Anfernee Simons and the young Portland squad, the Trail Blazers locked up the No. 3 seed in the Western Conference playoff race after Simons played the entire 2019 final regular season game vs. the Kings! Simons dropped a career-high 37 points. And, oh by the way, this was also his first career start. 

Yep, how could we forget that game!? 

This is how we are wrapping up our Trail Blazers Classic Games on NBCSNW.

Sunday, relive the April 10, 2019 magical game that nobody really expected the Trail Blazers to win.

It was quite the first start for Simons that's for sure!

Plus, the playoff seeding had yet to be determined heading into this game.

With Portland resting their starters for the regular season finale it seemed the Blazers were okay with getting the No. 4 seed in the West. 

BUT, the young Trail Blazers squad of Simons, Gary Trent Jr., Skal Labissiere, Jake Layman, along with Meyers Leonard had something to say about that!

Portland won in dramatic fashion defeating the Kings 136-131 by using just six players with Zach Collins coming off the bench for a total of 13 minutes.

Simons finished with seven 3-pointers after playing all 48 minutes. During the 2018-19 season, Simons averaged 3.8 points in 7.1 minutes per game.

To have all the young guys come in and secure the third seed, it felt good. All of us felt good about that. – Anfernee Simons said postgame

Before the game, the Blazers had already clinched homecourt advantage in the First Round following a 104-101 victory over the Lakers the night before.

But when Denver beat Minnesota 99-95 that night, locking the Nuggets into the No. 2 seed to face San Antonio that gave Portland the opening to claim the third seed.

The real kicker was: The Trail Blazers were down by as many as 28 points in the third. Portland closed the game within 117-116 with 7:53 remaining. Both Simons and Layman were key pieces to the Blazers success down the stretch.

With this dramatic outcome, Sacramento's season was over and Portland went on and hosted the Oklahoma City Thunder in the First Round.

And the wave is history; I mean -- the rest is history.

Starters for Trail Blazers vs. Kings final game of the 2019 regular season

SACRAMENTO

  • Willie Cauley-Stein
  • Nemanja Bjelica
  • De’Aaron Fox
  • Harrison Barnes
  • Buddy Hield

PORTLAND

  • Skal Labissiere
  • Jake Layman
  • Meyers Leonard
  • Gary Trent Jr.
  • Anfernee Simons

HOW TO WATCH: Anfernee Simons go off vs. Kings in final game of the 2019 regular season

WHEN: Sunday, June 14 at 6:30pm 

Channel: NBC Sports Northwest, Channel 737 (Portland), 617 (Seattle)

CHANNEL FINDER

Stream the game here.  

Or stream the game on your phone with the 'MyTeams' App -- available in the App Store for iPhones and on Google play.

Trail Blazers, fans show Anfernee Simons birthday love

Trail Blazers, fans show Anfernee Simons birthday love

Happy 21st Birthday, Ant! 

The Portland Trail Blazers along with its players and fans have been wishing shooting guard Anfernee Simons a very happy birthday on social media.

Before play was suspended in March, Simons was averaging 8.8 points, 2.4 rebounds, and 1.5 assists in 21.5 minutes per game.

The Trail Blazers also shared a highlight reel of Simons. And don’t worry, there’s plenty of “how did he do that” dunks in this video.

His teammates also showered him with love on Twitter and Instagram.

But the winner for best birthday post (or at least funniest post) goes to Jusuf Nurkic.

Simons may be in his second season in the league, but that doesn’t matter to the Bosnian Beast. Simons realizes that he will most likely continue to be a rookie in Nurk’s eyes, at least for a few more years.

Trail Blazers fans showed their appreciation for the young guard by tweeting out Happy Birthday wishes along with some of the best Simons GIFs.

From all of us at NBC Sports Northwest, Happy Birthday Ant!

Be sure to check out the latest Talkin’ Blazers Podcast with hosts NBA Champion Channing Frye and Emmy Award winner Dan Sheldon.

Nassir Little, Rodney Hood, Gary Trent, Jr. attend Black Lives Matter protest in Portland

hoodie.jpg
Rodney Hood Instagram

Nassir Little, Rodney Hood, Gary Trent, Jr. attend Black Lives Matter protest in Portland

With a nationwide outcry against systemic racial injustice in the USA, police brutality and the death of George Floyd, NBA players across the nation have taken action on social media and been seen demonstrating in protests around the country.

The Portland Trail Blazers continue to make a stand in the city of Portland.

First, Damian Lillard was seen peacefully protesting in southeast Portland, Oregon on Thursday evening.

Now, Rodney Hood and Nassir Little were spotted on Friday night 

Hoodie and Little along with hundreds of other protestors were chanting “Say her name” referencing to Breonna Taylor who was wrongfully shot multiple times and killed in a police raid of her home two months ago.

Gary Trent Jr. was also among tons of protestors on Friday night walking along the Hawthorne Bridge in Portland.

Anfernee Simons walked with protestors from Revolution Hall in southeast Portland to the waterfront on Friday night.

Why Jim Moran quickly had to back off from calling Anfernee Simons “Pre-K”

Why Jim Moran quickly had to back off from calling Anfernee Simons “Pre-K”

“Anfernee [Simons] always surprises me,” Portland Trail Blazers Assistant Coach Jim Moran told Jordan Kent and Michael Holton on this week’s edition of Trail Blazers Courtside.

Honestly, same.

The second-year player from IMG Academy is a former first-round (No. 24 overall) draft pick by the Portland Trail Blazers in the 2018 NBA Draft. The 6-foot-4, 180-pound point guard was the third player drafted in the NBA from high school since 2015. 

This is Moran’s fifth season with the Portland Trail Blazers with a specialization in player development. Coach Moran spends lots of time working with the young guys, making sure they are staying mentally and physically prepared to play at their best when their name is called.

And according to Moran, he has been impressed with the strides Ant has take from year one to year two.

Being around him everyday and just seeing how much stronger he’s getting. When he first got here, I called him ‘Pre-K.’ I stopped very quickly because he started calling me ‘Retirement Home.’I kind of let that one go. He’s just getting a lot stronger; He’s gotten a lot smarter; He’s getting a better feel of the offense, not just at the point guard but at the two-guard position. -- Jim Moran

Simons saw action in 65 games this 2019-20 season before the COVID-19 pandemic suspended the NBA season indefinitely. During that time, he averaged 8.8 points, 2.3 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game, and shot 40.2% from the field and 33.8% from three-point range.

“Pre-K” quickly graduated and skipped a few grades. And he had the right help to do so.

There's no doubt the Blazers' front office, as well as Rip City fans, have endless confidence that Simons is "the future." But there is also one other important piece to the puzzle when grading Simons.

Damian Lillard.

One thing I love being around Dame [Lillard] and CJ [McCollum], especially with Anfernee and Gary [Trent Jr.], is how much advice and pointers and the few games that Dame didn’t play, and as Ant is coming off the court, he’s pulling him over. It’s kinda cool being the guy sitting next to him [Dame] and be like ‘Wow that’s pretty impressive,’ not just the information he’s giving him but the leadership and how much he cares about this guy because he know’s he [Simons] can help us. — Jim Moran

The opportunity to be a 20-year-old kid in the league and absorb so much knowledge and wisdom from one of the best guard’s in the NBA is certainly something special. 

Be sure to check out the latest Talkin’ Blazers Podcast with hosts NBA Champion Channing Fry and Emmy Award winner Dan Sheldon along with special guest former Portland Trail Blazer Steve Blake.

Maurice Harkless still showing love to Damian Lillard and Trail Blazers fans

Maurice Harkless still showing love to Damian Lillard and Trail Blazers fans

Now, almost two months into the NBA hiatus, players are still doing their part to stay in shape and stay connected with fans.

Former Portland Trail Blazers forward Maurice Harkless started an Instagram Q & A session Sunday night that rolled over into Monday afternoon.

Harkless fielded the typical questions of ‘Burgers or Pizza,’ which the New York native answered with a Pizza GIF.

And then sticking with his East Coast roots, Harkless chose Shake Shack over In-N-Out, adding, “In-N-Out is weak.”

While there was plenty to chew on with the food questions, Harkless’ Q & A session was dominated by Portland Trail Blazers talk.

The soon-to-be 27-year-old had found a home in Portland after being traded from the Orlando Magic in July of 2015 where he spent his first few seasons. His time in Orlando was very up and down.

But as Rip City knows, he fit the system in Portland and loved his time playing alongside Damian Lillard.

Now in his eighth year in the league and having played for four different teams, the current New York Knick is praising his former teammate.

When asked, ‘who was the best shooter you’ve played with?’

Harkless had two answers and one of them was the Trail Blazers five-time All-Star point guard.

In his four seasons with the Trail Blazers, Harkless averaged 7.8 points and 3.3 rebounds before he was traded to the Clippers last summer.

During his recent Q & A, Harkless shared his favorite things about his time in Portland and shared how much he loved being a Portland Trail Blazer.

And then there’s the friendship between Harkless and former Trail Blazers forward Al-Farouq Aminu.

Harkless and Aminu would often be two of the last players still getting up shots following practices in Portland.

Their friendship was obvious. Harkless didn’t deny a ‘bro-mance’ between the two.

As for putting together a starting five that includes himself and four former teammates, Harkless decided he would want to play alongside, Lillard, Tobias Harris, Victor Oladipo, and then it would be a toss-up between the Bosnian Beast, Jusuf Nurkic and Plum-Dog Millionaire, Mason Plumlee.  

Even though Harkless wouldn’t come out and say that he misses Portland, he did answer Anfernee Simons when Ant asked a very valid question.

(When other players ask questions that might be the best part of NBA players’ Q & A sessions).

And then there was talk of the playoffs.

Harkless reminisced about how much he enjoyed playing in front of the home crowd at Moda Center.

He even dubbed Moda as one of the most rocking postseason-atmospheres.

As for Harkless’ favorite game he has ever played in whether that was in high school, at St. Johns, or in the NBA, Harkless didn’t hesitate:

“Definitely game 3 vs. Denver last year, 4OT is hard to forget.”

That was a Trail Blazers’ instant classic.

In that May 3, 2019 Game 3 in Portland, Harkless came up big down the stretch and in the multiple overtimes, to finish with 15 points and 10 rebounds in the Blazers’ 140-137 victory.  

Anfernee Simons Q&A: "Seattle should have a team again"

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USA Today Images

Anfernee Simons Q&A: "Seattle should have a team again"

Tuesday night was a perfect night for a question and answer session with Trail Blazers guard Anfernee Simons.

The No. 24 overall pick of the 2018 NBA Draft took to his Instagram to field questions from fans on his IG story.

Among some of his favorite things he mentioned were:

  • Call of Duty (favorite video game)
  • El Gaucho (favorite spot in PDX)
  • Popeyes and Chick-fil-a (He couldn’t choose between the two)

Simons also admitted that the Red Classic Jerseys are his fav Trail Blazers unis.

If he could play any other sport besides basketball it would be football.

Not only was this Q & A informative in regards to Simons' favorite things, it was also fun to see which of his teammates and former teammates chimed in to ask a question.

Jaylen Hoard wondered how Ant got his bounce?

So naturally, Simons gave all the credit to Hoard.

While, Rodney Hood was curious who the young fella compares his game to right now.

We’ll have to wait on that answer for another day.

Former teammate Maurice Harkless got in on the action as well.

Harkless asked simply, “you miss me?”

Of course it was all love from Simons.

But, even though he is just 20-years-old, Simons stills recognizes how much an I-5 rivalry is truly missed.

The Trail Blazers backup guard is all for an NBA team returning to Seattle.

Agreed, Simons. Agreed.