Tyrese Maxey named Eastern Conference Player of the Week

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Philadelphia 76ers’ Tyrese Maxey stands on the court after hitting a 3-point shot against the Boston Celtics during the first half of a preseason NBA basketball game Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2023, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Chris Szagola)

Philadelphia 76ers guard Tyrese Maxey has won Eastern Conference Player of the Week honors for this performance during the first week of the season. The Sixers’ rising star enjoyed per-game averages of 30.3 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 6.3 assists, helping to lead the Sixers to a 2-1 record during that span.

This is Maxey’s first Player of the Week award and is an encouraging sign for a player who has a ton of pressure on him this season.

Maxey defying expectations

Philadelphia 76ers guard Tyrese Maxey waves to students as he boards a bus after the NBA basketball team’s practice on the campus of Colorado State University on Thursday, Oct. 5, 2023, in Fort Collins, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

The former Kentucky guard has continued to defy expectations every year, and the start of this year is no different. With the ongoing drama between the Sixers and James Harden, the Sixers need Maxey to take another leap to keep the team in contention. Maxey continuing to play at this level or close to it would also keep the team afloat while they await the appropriate Harden trade.

He has become an elite shooter over his first four years in the league, but during his first week, the Sixers have seen improvement in his playmaking. Maxey averaging over six assists is a trend that the coaching staff and organization want to see continue. He not only needs to be able to get his own, but he also needs to be able to set the table for Joel Embiid and the rest of the team.

Setting up Embiid with those pocket passes will be key to keeping his assist numbers up. Many have high expectations for Maxey, and it looks like he is going to keep up his end of the bargain.