During his four-game absence, it was apparent the Sixers missed Ben Simmons on both sides of the floor. From his defense to his playmaking, he leaves a big hole to fill.
In his first two games back from injury, Simmons has looked great. He looks recharged and refreshed. Most importantly, he's shown what the team misses when he is not on the floor.
Since entering the league, Simmons has been among the best at creating three-point attempts. He has sat among the top of the NBA in assisted three-pointers every year of his career.
It is no coincidence that when Simmons made his return to action, the Sixers got hot shooting the ball from deep. With Simmons being so effective in the drive-and-kick game, he is a shooter's best friend on the court.
One player who has enjoyed sharing the floor with Simmons is Seth Curry. With Simmons' ability to connect with open shooters, what better teammate than a guy who is among the all-time leaders in three-point percentage.
In Wednesday's win over the Atlanta Hawks, Curry would come alive shooting the ball. He would be the Sixers' leading scorer with 20, including four makes from beyond the arc.
After the game, Curry would credit Simmons. Saying that playing alongside him makes his job easier.
"It's great. It's a lot of fun. [Simmons] makes like a lot easier for everybody on the floor, me included. He pushes the pace, and defensively, he just creates turnovers and creates havoc. Our offense is just a little more free-flowing. He just impacts the game in so many different ways all year long for us," said Curry.
It might not show up in the box score every game, but Simmons' presence affects winning on a nightly basis. His Swiss army-knife ability to impact every facet of the game has been a key factor in the Sixers' success this season.
Kevin McCormick covers the Philadelphia 76ers for South Jersey's 97.3 ESPN and Sports Illustrated. You can follow him on Twitter: @KevinMcCNBA.