Mandatory Photo Credit: Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire
For the third time in his career, and first as 76er, Tobias Harris is the Eastern Conference Player of the Week. Over the three games played this week, Harris averaged 23.3 points, 9.7 rebounds, and 4.0 assists. He also knocked down shots at an insane rate. Harris was shooting 56.3% from three-point range and 57.1% from the field overall. This uptick in play is a great sign for the Sixers and well deserved for the Sixers’ locker room leader.
Outside of a poor opening night performance, Tobias has been terrific so far this season. The influence of Doc Rivers on his game has been clear; Harris is back to looking like the decisive scorer the Sixers were hoping for when the team traded for him. He also put a major emphasis on the defensive side of the game; Harris is averaging 1.5 steals and 1.5 blocks per game, which would both be career highs for him.
Harris registered a season-high in points and his first double-double of the season in the game against the Raptors this week. He had a stat-line of 26 points and 11 rebounds in a game where the Sixers otherwise struggled to score. He also had a unique stat line of 24 points, 9 rebounds, 6 assists, 4 steals, and 3 blocks. This has not been done since Charles Barkley. Harris caught fire from deep in the final two games this week shooting 7 for 11 from beyond the arc.
The critics of Tobias Harris (me included) are silenced for the time being and the Sixers have greatly benefited from this level of play. If Harris can continue to produce at a high level it will have a major impact on the ceiling of this Sixers team. This level of play is necessary if they hope to remain “top dogs” and championship contenders. Tobias has done a great deal as a leader for the team and his high-character has gone a long way in the locker room. Seeing his play impact in the same way is extremely encouraging; Harris looks to continue building a legitimate case to be an all-star this year if he remains consistent.