P.J. Tucker only has three combined points in his last seven games, but he’s not concerned about a lack of offense, writes Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer. The Sixers won five of those games, even with their three best players missing time, and Tucker seems comfortable with his current role.
“As long as we’re winning, it doesn’t matter,” he said. “Of course you want to get more shots. What player doesn’t? But with the way we play — Coach (Doc Rivers) talks about a lack of ball movement all the time — it’s one of those things. Sometimes you get shots, sometimes you don’t. You keep playing and figure it out.”
Philadelphia obviously didn’t sign Tucker over the summer because of his scoring. It was his defensive presence and other intangibles that convinced the team to give him a three-year, $33.2MM contract. Still, Pompey states that his lack of involvement in the offense can be concerning. Tucker spends many possessions spotting up in the corner, and he’s often out of rhythm when he does get a chance to shoot.
“Sometimes you get shots,” Tucker said. “Sometimes you don’t. Sometimes the ball moves, sometimes it doesn’t. Without having (Joel Embiid), (the) ball’s got to pop. Ball’s got to move. Make easy shots for each other. It is what it is.”
There’s more on the Sixers:
- James Harden, who has been out of action since November 2 with a strained tendon in his right foot, may be ready to return in a few days, Pompey adds. “It’s different with James because James kind of controls the game,” Tucker said. “He gets everybody the ball. Without James, it’s tough — that’s why the ball has to move even more.”
- Shake Milton has made a strong case for rotation minutes once Harden and Tyrese Maxey are back on the court, according to Rich Hofmann of The Athletic. Milton has averaged 22.8 points and 6.8 rebounds over the past four games, along with 7.8 assists and only 2.5 turnovers. He’s also shooting .589/.500/.938 during that span. Hofmann notes that Milton was playing well before the stars were injured and shouldn’t be considered the team’s 11th man anymore.
- Paul Reed is learning to be more patient on offense and may be the choice for backup center minutes ahead of Montrezl Harrell once Embiid returns, Hofmann adds.