Aussie NBA Star Ben Simmons Honours 'Egg Boy' On Court
As far as sending a message goes, the shoe of an NBA player may as well be a billboard.
Presumably with this in mind, Australian-born Philadelphia 76ers star Ben Simmons has taken the opportunity to shout-out fellow Melbournian William Connolly -- now widely known as 'Egg Boy'.
Connolly cracked an egg on the back of Fraser Anning's head after the Queensland senator released a statement blaming Muslim immigration for the Christchurch terror attack.
The comments were widely condemned and Connolly's protest saw the teenager skyrocketed to notoriety.
Now, Simmons has joined a long list of celebrity figures -- which includes Last Week Tonight host John Oliver-- to pay tribute to the 17-year-old.
During Tuesday night's game against the Charlotte Hornets, Simmons stepped out onto the court with "EGG BOY" written on the side of his shoe just above the Nike tick.
Philadelphia director of performance and leadership development Paddy Steinfort, who is also Australian-born, posted a snap of the shoes to Instagram before the game began.
It isn't the first time Simmons has used his shoes -- which on the feet of an NBA Rookie of the Year get plenty of air time -- to acknowledge the Christchurch massacre.
Last week the 76ers point guard scrawled the message "PRAY FOR NZ" on the side of his shoe while playing against Sacramento.
After the game, Simmons was asked about the Christchurch tribute.
"It’s just sick to me," he said.
"That’s all I really have [to say]. It’s devastating. It’s sad for those families.
"My dad isn’t from Australia, but I grew up there and I’ve been to New Zealand, they are great people there."
Connolly was interviewed and released by police without charge on Tuesday, pending further investigations.
When asked if it appeared Victoria Police would lay charges against the teenager, his lawyer Peter Gordon said he had received "no indication" that would happen.
Gordon also confirmed his client would not pursue legal action against the Senator or his supporters who put him in a headlock.
Following his act of defiance, tributes to the 17-year-old have been flowing in, from prominent musicians offering him free tickets to their shows for life, to a crowdfunding page which has raised more than $43,000 for any legal fees and "more eggs".
Connolly will donate the money raised to victims of the Christchurch attack during which 50 people were killed.
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