Sixers Fall In Summer League Opener76ers, BREAKING NEWS, News Tuesday, July 10th, 2012
All eyes were on the 15th overall pick in this year’s draft. While getting off to a slow start, Maurice Harkless ended up putting together a respectable second half performance, finishing with nine points and five rebounds, including a team-high two offensive boards. The former St. John’s star was active on both sides of the floor, and displayed a good understanding on the defensive end, providing excellent help defense on multiple occasions. In fact, his first basket was a result of his defensive prowess. After forcing a turnover, Harkless capped off the fastbreak with a two-handed jam to record his first basket in a Sixers uniform, albeit in the summer league. Offensively, the 2011 Big East Rookie of the Year had some nice drives, including a buzzer-beater in which he took on two defenders and skied over them to hit the bucket.
Harkless is the only player active who was drafted a couple weeks back (Arnett Moultrie is out with an injury), so there are a lot of undrafted free agents and players who were overseas getting major minutes for Philly.
One of which is the older brother of the team’s starting point guard, Justin Holliday. Undrafted out of Washington, the 6-foot-6 forward was a pleasant surprise in tonight’s contest. Despite being an under the radar player, Holliday collected 10 points, seven rebounds and two steals. He proved to be a willing defender and aggressive with the ball.
On one instance, Holliday performed a “Dwayne Wade-esque” move in which he split two defenders on a pick and roll and took it to the hoop. Between his nifty dribbling and high-motor, Holliday definitely garnered the attention of the Sixers’ brain trust.
Out of the guards, the two who played the best were Xavier Silas and Jacob Pullen. The duo combined for 25 points (Pullen 15, Silas 10) and attacked the lane at will. Silas showed his strength getting into traffic and drawing contact on multiple plays while Pullen challenged the paint often to free up space for his teammates. The former Kansas State star led the team with two assists but should have recorded more had the Sixers converted more of their open looks.
The problem with Silas is over-aggression. He recorded three turnovers, all of which were a result of him trying to force things. However, that is something that can be worked on, so it will be interesting to see how he fixes that in tomorrow’s game.
In Philadelphia, there’s seemingly always a need for a big man, but it will be hard to find one on the summer league roster. Six-year veteran Soloman Jones had the best performance between the team’s big men, registering a team-high nine rebounds with six points.
Penn grad Zack Rosen did not see any action in today’s game, but look for him to see some action as the week progresses.
The SIxers take on the Utah Jazz (0-1) at 11 p.m. ET tomorrow.
Short URL: http://gcobb.com/?p=31385