By Tom Ignudo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Ben Simmons has become public enemy No. 1 for Philadelphia Sixers fans. The All-Star guard is holding out of training camp because he demanded a trade, and will reportedly never play in a Sixers uniform again.

Simmons has become a lightning rod for criticism since the summer. From the way that he’s handled this holdout, to his play against the Atlanta Hawks in the second of the playoffs, the fans have let Simmons hear it.

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And that’s exactly what Eugene Bozzi did on Monday morning when he joined Eyewitness News for an exclusive interview with Janelle Burrell. You might remember Bozzi, a Philadelphia native, from last week’s viral video of a man trapping an alligator in Florida with a trash can.

 

“I’m not going to be Ben Simmons,” Bozzi said when Burrell asked him what he was thinking as he tried to get the gator. “I’m gonna get me this basket.”

Yikes.

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Bozzi is right though. He didn’t pull a Simmons. He delivered when it mattered the most and captured the gator in order to save his family. I think it’s safe to say Bozzi wouldn’t have passed up a wide-open dunk in the playoffs against the Hawks.

“My father instincts kicked in,” Bozzi said.

As a kid, Bozzi said he used to catch Pitbulls, which helped him capture the gator last week.

“When I was a kid, I’m from North Philadelphia, I used to catch Pitbulls with blankets,” Bozzi said. “I definitely had no problems doing it with the alligator, and I’m glad everything worked out.”

The Sixers will begin the preseason Monday night against the Toronto Raptors at 7 p.m. without Simmons.

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Will Bozzi be watching? Probably. Let’s just hope that alligator doesn’t bother him again, or he might take another shot at Simmons.