The NBA season is almost one third in the books. This will be the first of three reports, grading each player on the Sixers roster. Several contributing factors are taken into account: statistics, chemistry with teammates, improvement from past seasons (if applicable) and the ever important, eye test. Let’s get started…
Justin Anderson: C
He’s only seen action in ten games this season, but I like his aggressiveness and he is one of a few players who will still take it strong to the hole and not always settle for the three.
Jerryd Bayless: B-
Although shooting slighting above his career FG and 3P%, there just seems to be something missing to his game. On a team devoid of good foul shooting, his career 83% doesn’t account for much if he’s shooting less than two foul shots per contest. His $9 million salary also means a healthy Fultz and McConnell will more than likely fill his role later this season and into the future.
Robert Covington: A
Currently maintaining career highs in FG%, 3P%, FT%, PPG, playing stellar defense and oh yeah, ranking third among small forwards and seventh in all the NBA in Real Plus/Minus, RoCo has been as solid as can be.
Joel Embiid: A
“The Process” has been a force since day one. His numbers are almost identical to last season when many were considering him for rookie of the year, even though he played only 31 games. The only improvement I’d like to see during the latter half of this season would be cutting those turnovers down from 4 per game to 3.
Markelle Fultz: N/A
Yes he was dreadful in those 4 early games, but I’m not going to condemn him with a low grade until he is playing healthy.
Richaun Holmes: B-
I’m not sure who Amir Johnson has compromising pictures of, but Richaun needs to get more playing time. He always brings a boost of energy and excitement and I’ve been surprised with his lack of playing time especially when Embiid has the night off.
Amir Johnson: C
Amir is exactly who we thought he was. Serviceable veteran big man. I like that he brings some playoff experience to an extremely young squad, but I’ll repeat my sentiment from above. He should not be getting more playing time than Mr. Holmes.
Furkan Korkmaz: N/A
Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot: C+
TLC has barely improved upon his low 40’s FG% and low 30’s 3P% from last season, but he is showing more of an ability to drive to the basket. It looks like he has the slight edge for playing time over Justin Anderson.
T.J. McConnell: B
T.J. has become one of my favorite Sixers to watch. Not only has he improved his shooting across the board, FG%, 3P% and FT%, he displays a throwback grit not found often in today’s NBA. If he has an open shot that isn’t a three or a lay-up, he actually takes it and makes it. His numbers don’t stand out like the stars on the team, but he makes it clear on a nightly basis, no one cares more about winning.
Jahlil Okafor: contact Witness Protection for further information.
JJ Redick: B+
JJ has been the perfect addition to the starting line-up. His 3P% is down a bit from the past few seasons with the Clippers but he has been good enough to space the floor, be the club’s top FT shooter at 92%, and knock down a good number of clutch shots. He is always intense in the huddles and it’s clear he is relishing this new opportunity.
Dario Saric: B
“The Homey” crashes the boards and fights for every loose ball. He’s added added thirty percentage points to his 3 point tally and continues to be one of the best foul shooters on the squad. His career FG% of 41% after his first 100 NBA games is the most glaring negative but I’m confident his hard hat mentality and work ethic will bring this to a more respectable number soon.
Ben Simmons: A
He earns an A simply by leading all rookies in scoring, rebounding, assists, double-doubles, triple-doubles and steals. His less than 2-1 assist to turnover ratio will improve the more time he plays with the current roster and hopefully will begin to show a consistent foul-line jumper by mid-season.
Nick Stauskas: D
A product of March Madness hype, Stauskas has fallen way short of expectations since he was drafted by Sacramento in 2014. As long as TLC, Anderson, McConnell and Fultz are here, he will be starving for playing time and most likely in a different city next season. Adios, Sauce Castillo!
There you have it. Remember, these can all change by the All-Star Break in mid-February so stay tuned!
Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports