Archive for the ‘ Philadelphia 76ers Blog ’ Category

Jahlil Okafor, professional scorer

One of the best things that could happen to the Sixers, aside from having all of their young talent healthy at the same time, would be for Jahlil Okafor to rise up and reach his potential. It’s been a down year for Okafor, but he definitely stepped up Saturday. Here’s CSN Philly reporting:

Jahlil Okafor, professional scorer

Jahlil Okafor’s string of four straight DNPs came to an end Saturday. He quickly made up for lost time at the basket.

Okafor scored a game-high 26 points (10 for 16 from the field, 6 for 11 from the line) with nine rebounds and a block in 36 minutes in the Sixers’ 109-93 loss to the Wizards…

Okafor got off to a hot start, scoring nine points in six first quarter minutes. He dropped another seven in the second. Okafor had a quiet third with four points — the Sixers only scored 15 in the quarter. He played the entire fourth quarter and added another six points.

“Jahlil Okafor is a professional scorer,” Brett Brown said. “For him to just jump into an NBA game and be given 35 minutes, him being very, very good fitness-wise, and for him to score like he scored at 21 years old, that’s Jahlil Okafor. That’s what he does.”

Sixers sign Chasson Randle to 10-day contract

The Philadelphia 76ers signed guard Chasson Randle to a 10-day contract today.

Randle was most recently with the NBA D-League Westchester Knicks, where he appeared in 19 games and posted averages of 21 points, four rebounds, three assists and one steal in 32 minutes per game, while shooting 40% from three-point range.

Prior to joining Westchester, he appeared in 21 games for ČEZ Nymburk of the Czech Republic’s National Basketball League, where he averaged 15 points, two rebounds, two assists and two steals per game, while helping the team win the 2015-16 league championship.

Randle played four years at Stanford, posting career averages of 17 points, three rebounds, three assists and one steal in 144 career games (142 starts). He was named to the All-PAC 12 First Team his junior and senior seasons, and capped his collegiate career as Stanford’s all-time leading scorer with 2,375 points.

Randle will wear number 5 for the Sixers.

Sixers waive Hollis Thompson

The Philadelphia 76ers waived Hollis Thompson today.

Thompson appeared in 31 games this season and averaged six points, three rebounds and one assist in 18 minutes per game.

Thompson was originally signed by the Sixers on September 24, 2013 and appeared in 256 games (82 starts), posting averages of eight points, three rebounds and one assist on 42% shooting from the field in 24 minutes per game.

With the move, the Sixers roster currently stands at 14 players.

Gerald Henderson struggling with hip pain

Gerald Henderson’s left-hip pain was too intolerable for him remain on the court.

The Philadelphia 76ers shooting guard was laboring on the Golden 1 Center with 8 minutes, 58 seconds remaining in Monday night’s 102-100 setback to the Sacramento Kings. Henderson spoke with Sixers coach Brett Brown, who basically came on the court to call a timeout as a way to get his veteran leader out of the game.

– Philadelphia Inquirer

The 2017 Sixers draft situation

In possession of their own pick and the Los Angeles Lakers’ top-three protected pick, the 76ers will probably be picking twice in the lottery. The good news for the Sixers is that this draft is shaping up to be a pretty deep one. Even better news is that it’s deep with what they need: guards and wings.

Markelle Fultz is the front-runner to be the No. 1 overall pick. He’d be an excellent fit as a point guard who is more of a scorer/shooter (49 percent from three) than a facilitator to play with Simmons (not to say Fultz is a poor passer). Malik Monk of Kentucky is an undersized combo guard who, like Fultz, can light up the scoreboard. Lonzo Ball of UCLA is another combo guard with the ability to shoot (43 percent from three) and dish (8.3 assists).

Then there’s athletic wings like high-flying Kansas freshman Josh Jackson who can do a little bit of everything. The ACC has two long, athletic wings that can wreak havoc on both ends in Florida State’s Isaac Austin and Duke’s Jayson Tatum. Landing one of these guys would give the Sixers scary length and a potentially disruptive defense.

– CSN Philly

Quick Take: At some point, two things have to happen for the Sixers: 1) Full health. 2) A clear indication that their season will be one of serious competition, and not riding the bottom of the standings anymore. Perhaps that’ll happen in 2017-18.

Nerlens Noel frustrated by lack of playing time

Back on the court for just his second game of the season, Philadelphia 76ers center Nerlens Noel expressed frustration over his limited playing time in Friday night’s 100-89 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers.

Noel, who made his season debut Sunday after recovering from offseason knee surgery only to sprain his left ankle and miss Wednesday’s game, had two points in eight minutes against the Lakers. Afterward, he aired his frustration.

“I think I’m too good to be playing eight minutes,” said Noel, the No. 6 pick in the 2013 draft. “That’s crazy. Need to figure this s— out.”

– ESPN.com

Quick Take: Nerlens just got back on the court. The first step is for him to stay healthy, fit into the rotation, and earn additional playing time. 

Jerryd Bayless has season-ending wrist surgery

The Philadelphia 76ers announced that guard Jerryd Bayless underwent successful surgery this morning to repair a torn ligament in his left wrist, which will be immobilized for the next 12 weeks.

The surgery was performed by Dr. Michelle Carlson of the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City.

“While it’s unfortunate Jerryd will miss the remainder of the season, we feel confident that today’s procedure will resolve his wrist injury and related discomfort,” said Sixers President of Basketball Operations Bryan Colangelo. “Jerryd is to be credited with his committed and professional approach in making every effort to avoid this outcome.”

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, “Bayless signed a three-year, $27 million contract with the Sixers in July. So he’s part of their future plans.”

On October 21, the Sixers medical staff identified the source of the left wrist soreness to be a ligament injury and at that time both he and the team elected to pursue non-surgical treatment options to address the injury.

During his second game of the season vs. Memphis on November 23 – in which he had 18 points, six rebounds and six assists in 30 minutes – multiple falls to the floor resulted in significant impact to the wrist. Bayless and the team then consulted with multiple wrist and hand specialists, who concluded that surgery was needed.

Bayless was signed by the Sixers on July 13, 2016 and appeared in three games this season, posting averages of 11 points, four rebounds and four assists in 24 minutes per game.

Nerlens Noel almost ready to return

Nerlens Noel almost ready to return

The weeks and months have quickly piled up. Nerlens Noel has not played an NBA regular-season game since last season ended for the Sixers on April 13. Nearly eight months later, Noel is nearing the return he has been eyeing for quite some time now.

“It’s always an excitement to be able to play basketball after this amount of time, including the summer, not being able to play organized basketball at a competitive level,” Noel said Thursday. “I’ve been really looking forward to this. I think I’ve gained some momentum coming back from this minor surgery, and I think I’m in a really good place and I’m feeling good with my body. Everything is on point.”

Noel has been sidelined since undergoing elective left knee surgery in October to address an inflamed plica. He traveled to New Orleans on Wednesday to join the Sixers ahead of their 99-88 win over the Pelicans (see game recap). Noel continued his rehab Thursday while the team prepped for the game.

– CSN Philly

Quick Take: The Sixers are 5-18 this season, the second worst record in the NBA, ahead only of the 4-17 Mavericks. It’s nice that they’re getting Noel back, but it’s very unclear how he, Joel Embiid and Jahlil Okafor will fit together. The chemistry experiment will be worth watching.

Kings at Sixers game postponed

The Sixers’ game against the Kings at the Wells Fargo Center has been postponed because of moisture on the court. There was no immediate word on a rescheduled date for the game.

Arena staff members tried using wet mops to fix the issue to no avail.

“The Philadelphia 76ers announced that tonight’s game against the Sacramento Kings has been postponed due to an issue with the surface of the court and with player safety in mind,” the team said in a statement. “Arena officials worked diligently to address the issue, but NBA officials determined that the court was not suitable for play.”

– CSN Philly

Quick Take: The InsideHoops Twitter account decided to get silly as the game started to be in doubt and tweeted “Trust the mopcess.” Unfortunately, the mops were unable to do the job. The best reaction after the non-game was from Sixers center Joel Embiid, who tweeted the following: Well The court was tanking tonight…. #TrustTheProcess

Sixers assign Nerlens Noel to D-League

Sixers assign Nerlens Noel to D-League

The Philadelphia 76ers assigned Nerlens Noel to the Delaware 87ers of the NBA Development League today.

The move is for health reasons. The assignment is part of Noel’s ongoing rehabilitation program for his left knee.

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, “the move is similar to what Jerryd Bayless did on Nov. 14 to get in some practice time. The Sixers will host the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday night at the Wells Fargo Center. As a result, there won’t be a practice opportunity for Noel. He will practice down there on Wednesday.”

In a related move, the team has recalled Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot from the Sevens.

The Oklahoma City Thunder has acquired forward Jerami Grant and a trade exception from the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for forward Ersan Ilyasova and a protected draft pick, Thunder Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti announced today.

Oklahoma City will convey its first round pick, in the first allowable draft beginning in 2020, unless that pick falls within the top 20 picks of that year’s draft. If the pick is within the top 20, the Thunder will instead send the 76ers its own second round draft picks in 2022 and 2023.

The 22-year-old Grant (6-8, 210) has appeared in 144 games (63 starts) over three seasons with Philadelphia, averaging 8.2 points, 3.9 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.38 blocks in 24.2 minutes per game. This season, Grant is averaging 8.0 points, 3.5 rebounds 2.00 blocks and 20.5 minutes per contest.

Originally selected by the 76ers with the 39th overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, Grant spent two seasons at Syracuse where he averaged 12.1 points and 6.8 rebounds as a sophomore. He scored in in double-figures in 24 of his 32 games played that season.

Philadelphia 76ers President of Basketball Operations Bryan Colangelo announced today the team has exercised the fourth-year contract options on center Joel Embiid and guard Nik Stuaskas, as well as the third-year contract option on forward Jahlil Okafor.

The Sixers selected Embiid with the third overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. After missing the first two seasons while he fully recovered from an injury, Embiid appeared in all seven of the Sixers preseason games this season. He posted averages of 11 points, six rebounds and one block in only 15 minutes per game. He enters the 2016-17 season as a leading candidate for NBA Rookie of the Year.

Stuaskas, selected eighth overall by the Sacramento Kings in the 2014 NBA Draft, was acquired by the Sixers as part of a trade on July 10, 2015. In his first season with the Sixers, he appeared in 73 games (35 starts) and averaged nine points, three rebounds and two assists in 25 minutes per contest.

Okafor was selected by the Sixers with the third overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft. He was named to the NBA All-Rookie First Team, after averaging 18 points, seven rebounds, one assist and one block on 51% shooting from the field in 30 minutes per game. Additionally, Okafor was selected to participate in the NBA Rising Stars Challenge during All-Star Weekend in Toronto.

Nerlens Noel undergoes knee surgery

Nerlens Noel undergoes knee surgery

Philadelphia 76ers power forward Nerlens Noel underwent what the team calls “a minor elective arthroscopic procedure to address localized soreness associated with inflamed plica in his left knee.”

The surgery was performed by Orthopaedic Surgeon Dr. Riley J. Williams at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City and attended by Sixers Chief Medical Advisor Dr. Jonathan Glashow of Mt. Sinai Hospital.

Noel began his post-operative care at the Hospital for Special Surgery and will then travel to Birmingham, AL to continue his rehabilitation under the direction of Associate Clinical Director Kevin Wilk at Champion Sports Medicine.

It’s not known yet how long Noel will be out of action.

The Philadelphia 76ers today announced the team has waived Anthony “Cat” Barber, Dionte Christmas, Shawn Long, Brandon Paul and James Webb III.

Barber appeared in two preseason games for the Sixers and posted averages of six points, two rebounds and two assists in six minutes per game. Prior to joining the Sixers, Barber appeared in four games for the New Orleans Pelicans in the Utah Summer League this summer, averaging six points and one assist in 12 minutes per game.

Christmas appeared in 31 games for the Phoenix Suns during the 2013-14 season, where he posted averages of two points and one rebound in seven minutes per game. He also has seven seasons of experience internationally, most recently with Torku Konyaspor Basket of the Turkish Basketball Super League.

Long saw action in all seven of the Sixers preseason games, where he averaged four points and two rebounds in 10 minutes per game. Long played for the Sixers during the Samsung NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, where he averaged nine points, three rebounds and one block in 12 minutes per game.

Paul played in four preseason games for the Sixers, where he averaged seven points and two rebounds on 50% shooting from the field in 10 minutes per game. He also appeared in all six games during this summer’s Samsung NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, where he averaged 11 points, three rebounds and two steals in 20 minutes per game.

Webb, who appeared in six preseason games, posted averages of four points and four rebounds in 15 minutes per game, while shooting 40% from three-point range. Webb also played for the Sixers in the Samsung NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, appearing in four games and averaging five points, two rebounds, one assist and one steal in 13 minutes per game.

The Sixers roster currently stands at 15 players.

Sixers sign Dionte Christmas

Sixers sign Dionte Christmas

The Philadelphia 76ers signed guard Dionte Christmas today.

Christmas appeared in 31 games for the Phoenix Suns during the 2013-14 season, where he posted averages of two points and one rebound in seven minutes per game. He also has seven seasons of experience internationally, most recently with Torku Konyaspor Basket of the Turkish Basketball Super League.

He was originally signed by Philadelphia in September of 2009 after participating in the Orlando Summer League as part of the Sixers’ combined team with the Brooklyn Nets.

Christmas had a stellar career at Temple University, where he averaged 16 points, four rebounds and two assists in four years, while becoming the first player to ever lead the Atlantic 10 Conference in scoring for three consecutive seasons.

Sixers waive Elton Brand, who is retiring

Philadelphia 76ers forward Elton Brand previously announced his intention to retire following the team’s final preseason game at Miami on Friday evening. Accordingly, as a matter of procedure, the Sixers have requested waivers on Brand.

Over 17 NBA seasons, Brand appeared in 1,058 career games with 868 starts for Chicago, the Los Angeles Clippers, Philadelphia, Dallas and Atlanta. The 6’ 8” Brand posted career averages of 16 points, nine rebounds, two assists and two blocks per game. His 1,828 blocks rank him 20th all-time in NBA history. He played 34,910 career minutes, which ranks him 67th all-time. Brand was also the recipient of the 2005-06 Joe Dumars Trophy, presented each season to the player who exemplifies the ideals of sportsmanship on the court.

Elton Brand to retire from NBA

Elton Brand to retire from NBA

Philadelphia 76ers forward Elton Brand announced today that he has informed the team of his intention to retire at the conclusion of the 2016 preseason.

“Elton Brand symbolizes professionalism and class in every sense,” said Sixers President of Basketball Operations Bryan Colangelo. “A stellar college and 17-year pro career speaks to his high-level basketball ability, and his profound impact on people and his teammates represents what kind of incredible human being he is. On behalf of the entire organization, it has been an honor to have the opportunity to work with Elton and to have him be part of the 76ers’ family and larger Philadelphia community.”

Over 17 NBA seasons, Brand appeared in 1,058 career games with 868 starts for Chicago, the Los Angeles Clippers, Philadelphia, Dallas and Atlanta. The 6’ 8” Brand posted career averages of 16 points, nine rebounds, two assists and two blocks per game. His 1,828 blocks rank him 20th all-time in NBA history. He played 34,910 career minutes, which ranks him 67th all-time. Brand was also the recipient of the 2005-06 Joe Dumars Trophy, presented each season to the player who exemplifies the ideals of sportsmanship on the court.

Brand originally joined the Sixers on July 9, 2008, when he signed a free-agent contract with the team. He spent four seasons in Philadelphia before spending 2012-15 with Dallas and Atlanta. Brand then signed with the Sixers on January 4, 2016 and then again on September 7, 2016. All told as a member of the Sixers, Brand appeared in 263 games (222 starts) and averaged 13 points and seven rebounds in 30.4 minutes per contest.

A two-time NBA All-Star, Brand was the first overall pick in the 1999 NBA Draft by the Chicago Bulls and was named Rookie of the Year.

A native of Peekskill, N.Y., Brand was named a McDonald’s All-American following his senior year of high school and attended Duke University. In his second and final season at Duke, Brand helped the Blue Devils reach the NCAA Championship game while also earning consensus National Player of the Year honors.

An active member in the community throughout his NBA career, Brand established the Elton Brand Foundation in the spring of 2000 and donated $235,000 to open a reading and learning center in his hometown in 2004.

Brand is also a founding member and president of Gibraltar Films, a company engaged in film investment, acquisition, production, and distribution of motion pictures.

The Philadelphia 76ers today made multiple updates to their basketball operations department, including the promotion of Ned Cohen to Vice President of Basketball Operations and Chief of Staff, as well as a re-structured analytics department, which will be led by Vice President of Analytics and Strategy Alex Rucker, and supported by Director of Applied Analytics Dr. Lance Pearson and Sergi Oliva as Director of Basketball Analytics and Innovation.

Additionally, the Sixers promoted Vince Rozman to Senior Director of Basketball Operations. The team also named Scott Epsley as Director of Physiotherapy and Clinical Diagnostics, Juan Jackson as Director of Team Security, Shea Dawson as Manager of Team Services and Kevin Owens as Basketball Operations Coordinator.

“These moves reflect the outstanding performance of many within the 76ers organization and also addresses our desire to enhance and improve our internal processes regarding decision making, athlete performance care and team services. We are very excited about the future of this organization both on and off the basketball floor,” said Colangelo.

Cohen, who joined the Sixers this June, continues to serve as the primary liaison for all interdepartmental planning, coordination and communication. He joined the organization after serving as the Associate Vice President of Basketball Operations with the NBA. Since his arrival at the league office in 2004, he played a critical role in a number of areas, with a specific focus on competitive matters. Additionally, Cohen was a key part of the operations surrounding many of the league’s significant meetings and events, including the NBA All-Star Game, Competition Committee and Board of Governors meetings.

Rucker arrives in Philadelphia after having spent the last seven seasons with the Toronto Raptors as the Senior Analytics Consultant. In that role, he supported key decision makers with analytic tools and insight, identified new basketball data sources and directed the engineering and software team. For the past two seasons, he concurrently served as the Director of Performance Analysis with Basketball Canada, where he performed advanced statistical modeling and an analysis for the men’s national team. Prior to joining the Raptors, Rucker was a Staff Officer in the United States Navy, serving under the Commander of the United States 7th Fleet in an executive leadership role. He holds a law degree from the University of Notre Dame, a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of British Columbia and is currently pursuing a doctorate degree.

Pearson spent last season in the role of coordinator of coaching analytics and special video projects, and has been working within the Sixers’ basketball operations department for the past three seasons. He spent four years at Lindsey Wilson College in Kentucky as an assistant coach and adjunct professor of psychology. Pearson holds three bachelor’s degrees from the University of Kentucky as well as a Ph.D. in cognitive and neutral systems from Boston University.

Oliva begins his third season with the Sixers, after having served the past two as Basketball Operations Analyst prior to this promotion. Before joining the organization, he was a researcher at UPC-Barcelona Tech, where he received his PhD in Computational Complexity, as well as Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Computer Science. He also continues to collaborate with the coaching development programs within the Catalan Basketball Federation.

Epsley joins the Sixers sports performance staff with nearly two decades of physical therapy experience, previously serving dual roles as both the Head Physical Therapist for Georgetown University and as Director for Professional, Collegiate and Elite Sports Therapy and Clinical Education with Medstar Sports Medicine. He has served as a medical consultant for the Washington Wizards, Washington Capitals, Washington Nationals, DC United, Team Penske’s IndyCar drivers and the New York City Ballet. Additionally, Epsley has authored a wide array of research and is a certified musculoskeletal sonographer.

Jackson has over 28 years of law enforcement and security experience, having most recently served as the Director of Team Security for the Atlanta Hawks last season. Prior to that, he spent five seasons as the Team Security representative for the Oklahoma City Thunder, while also serving as the Team Security representative for the Philadelphia Eagles, as well as the Director of Corporate Security and Emergency Management for the Simon Property Group. Additionally, Jackson spent over two decades with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and started his career as a New Jersey State Trooper.

Rozman enters his 12th season with the organization, having spent the past two seasons as the team’s Director of Basketball Operations. In his current role, he will continue to play a key role while also overseeing the day-to-day operations of the scouting department.

Dawson spent the last seven years as the Director of Basketball Operations for the Pangos All-American Camp while also serving as the Head Assistant Women’s Basketball Coach for the Windward School in Los Angeles, CA. Additionally, Dawson has extensive operations experience with a number of high-profile basketball camps and events, including the Samsung NBA Las Vegas Summer League, Adidas Nations and the Las Vegas Fab 48.

Owens enters his second season with the Sixers, where he will assist with the overall day-to-day operations of the department and work closely with the executive and coaching staffs. Prior to this promotion, he served as an Operations Assistant for the 87ers, where he was responsible for a number of areas related to team operations, including the preparation of scouting reports and game film, implementation of data and analytics, and coding practices.

In conjunction with the aforementioned changes, former Vice President of Basketball Operations Sachin Gupta and Vice President of Analytics Ben Falk have moved on to pursue new opportunities.

Joel Embiid preseason update

So far through five preseason games, Sixers center Joel Embiid is averaging 9.4 points, 5.6 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in just 13.0 minutes per game. His field goal percentage is only 38.2% but we’re talking about so few shots that it’s too small a sample size to care about. So, forget I even mentioned it. He’s also showing some excellent defensive ability. Anyway, Embiid will soon spend a bit more time on the floor. Here’s CSN Philly reporting:

Joel Embiid playing time will increase slightly

Brett Brown plans to extend Joel Embiid’s playing time another three minutes Saturday against the Pistons, upping his restriction to 18.

The Sixers have two preseasons game remaining before opening night, when Brown would like to play him even longer.

“We expect to extend some minutes tomorrow night,” Brown said after practice Friday. “I think you might see him get up to as many as 18 tomorrow night, with the end game trying to deliver him to the [season-opening] OKC game at 20, 24.”

Jerryd Bayless has wrist injury

The Sixers have a lot of frontcourt talent (even with Ben Simmons injured), but they’re pretty empty in the backcourt. Jerryd Bayless could have a big role on the team this season. But first, his wrist needs to heal. Here’s the Philadelphia Inquirer reporting:

Jerryd Bayless has wrist issue

It appears that Jerryd Bayless’ left wrist is worse that the 76ers had originally expected.

The point guard had an MRI on Wednesday, and the test results weren’t favorable. The Sixers have been hush on the details, saying that it will make announcement in the near future. Bayless said Thursday night that he wasn’t sure what was wrong.

Basketball blog