Undrafted rookie T.J. McConnell is making a strong bid for a roster spot, according to Matt Breen of The Philadelphia Inquirer. He is one of six point guards on the roster, but with Tony Wroten and Kendall Marshall both injured, an opportunity exists for McConnell, who had 10 points and 10 assists Friday in his first preseason start. Sixers coach Brett Brown says the rookie has a “very, very acute” self-awareness and understanding of the game. “He’s a point guard,” Brown said. “I’ve said it all along that point guards are born. He thinks and acts and does things like a point guard.”
There’s more out of Philadelphia:
- Brown said keeping just three point guards on the roster will be “tricky” if Wroten and Marshall aren’t available at the start of the season, tweets Tom Moore of Calkins Media. The coach adds that, “We’re not going to cut down [the roster] until the death knock” because there have been so many injuries (Twitter link). “This whole thing is fluid and changes on a dime,” said Brown, who wants to take a longer look at his younger players (Twitter link).
- Brown is taking issue with things that were said about Joel Embiid in a recent SI.com article, writes Bob Cooney of the Philadelphia Daily News. Brown was especially upset about the allegation that Sixers majority owner Josh Harris ordered the coach and GM Sam Hinkie to tell Embiid not to go to Las Vegas for the team’s summer camp, and when neither one did, Embiid showed up. “When you read about what’s now been written, there are several portions that are wildly inaccurate,” Brown said. “That [directives from Harris] being one of them. I have no idea what that means or why it was said. It’s just one of those things that we move on from. We’re pretty much treating it as noise and we will move on from it.”
- Nik Stauskas hasn’t played yet in the preseason, but is hoping to be ready before opening night, Cooney writes in the same piece. Acquired in a July trade with the Kings, Stauskas has been recovering from a stress reaction in his right tibia. “I felt great today and really got in a good sweat at the morning shootaround,” he said Saturday. “I’m really not feeling any pain and my legs feel really strong. I should be ready soon.”