Sport Basketball The Aussie kid in the same ad as Nicki Minaj and Pharrell
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The Aussie kid in the same ad as Nicki Minaj and Pharrell

ben simmons
This Aussie is a man in demand. Photo: Getty
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Michael Phelps, Nicki Minaj, Pharrell Williams and Rebel Wilson are the sort of names you would expect to be endorsing in-demand products.

They are all celebrities in their own right and were joined by the likes of DJ Khaled and Steve Buscemi in the latest advertisement for ‘Beats By Dre’ headphones.

A young Australian joined them too, with 20-year-old Ben Simmons – tipped to be the next big thing in basketball – also featuring.

Simmons’ cameo was only brief but the sheer fact he was involved, and was the only basketballer to be, shows his star power.

Watch the video below:

It is a feat made all the more impressive by the fact that Simmons has not yet even played an NBA game.

The Aussie was taken at No.1 in the 2016 NBA draft by the Philadelphia 76ers.

The season has not started but Simmons won’t feature in 2016 due to injury.

A growing business portfolio

Before Simmons was even drafted, he had already signed a $US20 million shoe sponsorship deal with Nike.

He was widely tipped to be the first taken in this year’s draft and so it proved, with struggling franchise Philadelphia not passing up the opportunity to take the Melbourne-raised prospect.

But before the draft, Nike and Adidas engaged in a bidding war for his services which generated plenty of headlines in the United States.

Nike won out in a deal believed to be linked to basketball superstar LeBron James’ lifetime agreement with the company.

James and Simmons are friends, with the four-time NBA MVP describing the Aussie as his “little brother” earlier this month.

The pair trained together in the build-up to the NBA season, as seen in this photo posted on Simmons’ Instagram page.

A photo posted by Ben Simmons (@bensimmons) on

Simmons can be seen in the middle and appears noticeably bigger than James, who is second from left.

Simmons has also signed with James’ Klutch Agency.

The Aussie will earn big money from his contract with Philadelphia as well, with the deal likely to yield him more than $US25 million.

An unfortunate start

Simmons was on track to play a key role for Philadelphia this season after some impressive performances in the NBA Summer League.

But he suffered a right foot fracture in training earlier this month, ruling him out for at least three months.

It was a blow for Simmons and the struggling 76ers franchise, but, after some initial disappointment, the Aussie was positive and upbeat.

“He’s doing well,” Philadelphia coach Brett Brown was quoted as saying in The Australian.

“He was sombre at the hospital when he received the results of the scans. But it’s not all doom and gloom.

“I feel like I’ve heard a bounce in his voice.

“I’m excited to dig in to a different part of his development [while he is injured].

“You can sit in a room and look at edits of some of the great point guards, some of the great do-all, multi-purpose players that we all look at Ben as growing into.”

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