Markelle Fultz To Be Active For Monday’s Game

Sixers point guard and 2017 first overall pick Markelle Fultz will be available off the bench tonight, head coach Brett Brown told reporters, including Gina Mizell of the Denver Post (Twitter link).

Fultz, 19, is available to play for the first time since October 23, missing 68 games in that span.

“He’s put in a lot of work,” Brown said, per Derek Bodner of The Athletic (Twitter link). “I’m thrilled to be able to offer him the opportunity to come join his teammates at this exciting time of the year.”

Fultz will not have a specific minutes restriction, but the team will monitor his play and the situation of the game, tweets ESPN’s Chris Haynes.

Fultz’s first NBA season has been hampered by injury and shrouded in mystery. Just four games into the year, the No. 1 pick was sidelined with a scapular muscle imbalance in his right shoulder. The ailment forced Fultz to alter his shooting motion, which was causing him discomfort.

In those four games, Fultz posted averages of 6.0 PPG, 2.3 RPG, and 1.8 APG.

At the time of injury, Fultz was shooting just 33% from the field and did not attempt a single three-pointer. That was out of character for the young guard, whose field goal percentage (47.6%) and three-point shooting (41.3%) was solid as a freshman at Washington.

The Sixers issued a statement in early December that Fultz’s shoulder injury had healed and he was not in pain. However, confusion about his status lingered as he did not play and multiple videos of him shooting showed a hitch in his release.

Fultz will back up Rookie of the Year candidate Ben Simmons at point guard.

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