76ers

2020 NBA mock draft roundup 3.0: Sizing up a few possibilities for Sixers

2020 NBA mock draft roundup 3.0: Sizing up a few possibilities for Sixers

The NBA’s draft lottery, combine and early entry withdrawal deadline have all been indefinitely postponed since our last mock draft roundup. We’ve also done a first-round mock draft of our own, giving the Sixers Tyrell Terry from Stanford.

Here’s a look at who analysts have the Sixers taking with the 22nd pick in some recent mock drafts:

Sam Vecenie, The Athletic 

Jahmi’us Ramsey (Texas Tech) 

Vecenie: “I’m a bit less enthused about Ramsey than some seem to be. Does he do enough other stuff outside of scoring on jumpers? And realistically, I have a few questions about his ability to do that at a high level. About 68 percent of his points last season came either out on the break or off jump shots. He’s not particularly adept as a shooter off the dribble, having made those at just a 33.3 effective field goal percentage. On top of that, he only made 64 percent of his foul shots.”

It’s unusual to see a 40-plus percent three-point shooter with a free throw percentage near Ramsey’s range. Foul shooting tends to be an excellent indicator of three-point success in the NBA, so that, along with the off the dribble inefficiency Vecenie highlighted, is concerning. The positives with Ramsey are that he’s a decent athlete, built well and has an obvious pathway toward helping an NBA team if his outside shooting pans out (see draft profile). 

Jeff Goodman, Stadium

Kira Lewis Jr. (Alabama) 

Goodman: “The Sixers could use a backup point guard, and Lewis is a guy who can come in and play with a speed similar to Ben Simmons. Lewis has another gear, and is also an above-average perimeter shooter.” 

Lewis’ speed is the thing you notice right away, closely followed by his thin frame, but he has plenty of other attractive qualities. The 6-foot-3, 165-pound guard was strong across the board as a sophomore, averaging 18.5 points, 5.2 assists and 4.8 rebounds. Putting fit aside, it seems there’s a good chance he’d be the best player available if he’s still around at No. 22. 

Jonathan Wasserman, Bleacher Report 

Nico Mannion (Arizona) 

Wasserman: “A projected lottery pick early in the season, Mannion now looks like a possible value pick later in the first round. He lacks burst for blowing by or finishing, having totaled just 15 field goals at the basket in the half court. But there is enough skill tied to his shot-making versatility and passing for Mannion to serve as a useful second-unit guard.”

The lack of explosiveness Wasserman describes is one factor that could dissuade the Sixers with Mannion, since the team could really use a player that can attack the rim with little to no assistance from his teammates. Mannion constantly look to push the ball ahead, runs the pick-and-roll well and can also play off the ball (see draft profile). 

Danny Cunningham, Complex 

RJ Hampton (New Zealand Breakers) 

Cunningham: “As far as Hampton goes, this is admittedly a pretty far slide for him down the first round. He went and played professionally in the NBL and played less than 20 minutes per game. It feels tough to gauge just how good he is based on that. But it can be said that he has a high upside athletically and that his jumper needs work, which is nothing new for a Sixers guard."

If Hampton is still on the board at No. 22, the Sixers would have an interesting decision to make. He shot just 29.4 percent from three-point range this season and struggled defensively, but it might be tempting to bank on his potential. The team owns four second-round picks (Nos. 34, 36, 49 and 59) and could still target a player or players who fit the “immediate contributor” label later in the draft. 

Tyler Byrum and Chase Hughes, NBC Sports Washington 

Devin Vassell (Florida State) 

Byrum and Hughes: “Vassell made a big leap during his sophomore season for the 'Noles. He's one of the best outside shooters in this class (41 percent last year) and can also get to the rim. He's got a thin, rangy frame and may have to bulk up a bit to be effective finishing at the basket once he reaches the pros.”

We’d be surprised to see Vassell fall this far. In the event he does, the 6-foot-7 wing is a classic 3-and-D prospect who’d likely be worth taking for the Sixers (see draft profile). 

A. Sherrod Blakely, NBC Sports Boston 

Tre Jones (Duke) 

Blakely: “Jones is not going to wow you with his shooting, passing or athleticism. But he’s talented enough in all those areas to help any team. And being available this late in the draft makes him a high-reward, low-risk pick. Jones has tremendous leadership skills which enable him to run a team and — maybe most important at the next level — he has momentum-swinging ability.”

Jones is a dependable, winning player. Though he doesn’t appear to have an incredibly high ceiling, he did make a significant jump as a sophomore. He went from a 26.2 percent three-point shooter as a freshman to hitting 36.1 percent from long range this past season. 

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Kobe Bryant's 7 best NBA moments in Philly

Kobe Bryant's 7 best NBA moments in Philly

We are paying tribute to a legend. 

NBC Sports Philadelphia will re-broadcast three of Kobe Bryant's landmark games Monday night — the 2008 Olympic gold medal game at 6 p.m., followed by Bryant's final game in Philadelphia at 8 p.m. and the 2012 Olympic gold medal game at 10:30 p.m. 

Bryant honed his Hall of Fame talents at Lower Merion High School and sharpened his skills and competitiveness in the Sonny Hill League and on playgrounds across the Delaware Valley. 

Bryant had his share of highs and lows as a professional in his hometown. 

He played 17 regular-season games in Philadelphia, finishing with a 7-10 record and a 22.8 scoring average. More importantly, he had a perfect 3-0 record in postseason games in Philadelphia, with all three wins coming in the Lakers' 4-1 series victory over the 76ers in the 2001 NBA Finals. Bryant averaged 25.7 points in those three games and captured the second of his five career NBA championships. 

Here's a look back at some of Bryant's most memorable moments in Philly. 

First NBA game in Philadelphia — Nov. 26, 1996
Bryant played his first professional game in his hometown as an 18-year old reserve, scoring 12 points in 21 minutes in a 100-88 Lakers win. He shot 4 of 10 from the field, 2 of 5 from three-point range and made both of his free throw attempts.  

Bryant's rookie counterpart Allen Iverson finished with 16 points on 6 of 27 shooting and 10 assists. Former Temple star Eddie Jones and Shaquille O'Neal each had a game-high 23 points for the Lakers. 

Bryant came off the bench in 65 of the 71 games he played as a rookie, averaging 7.6 points in 15.5 minutes per game. 

NBA Finals — June 2001
The Lakers and Sixers arrived in Philadelphia for Games 3, 4, 5 of the 2001 NBA Finals with the series even at one game apiece. The 22-year old Bryant famously proclaimed that he was coming to Philly to "cut their hearts out."

The Lakers went on to win the next three games in Philadelphia to secure their second straight NBA championship. 

Game 3 was the closest of the three games — the Lakers won 96-91 behind Bryant's 32 points. He had 19 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists in a 14-point win in Game 4 before closing out the series with 26 points, 12 rebounds and six assists in a 12-point win in Game 5. 

2002 All-Star Game MVP — Feb. 10, 2002
Bryant's "cut their hearts out" comment was still fresh in the minds of Sixers fans eight months later when the 2002 All-Star game was played in Philadelphia. Bryant was booed throughout the night, but he fed off the negative energy to score a game-high 31 points and win the first of his four career All-Star Game MVP awards. 

He was subsequently booed during the All-Star MVP presentation and admitted that his feelings were hurt by the frosty reception from his hometown crowd.  

Bryant averaged 25.2 points during that 2001-2002 season and led the Lakers to a third straight NBA championship. 

44-point outburst — Dec. 20, 2002 
Bryant's best game in Philadelphia came 10 months after that 2002 All-Star Game, when he posted 44 points and 10 assists in a 107-104 loss to the Sixers. He shot 16 of 35 from the field, 2 of 5 from three-point range and made all 10 of his free throw attempts. 

Iverson led the Sixers to victory with 32 points, nine steals and five assists. Keith Van Horn had a double-double with 20 points and 11 rebounds. 

The 2003 Lakers came up short in their quest for a fourth straight NBA title, losing to the Spurs in the Western Conference semifinals.

Snapping the streak — Dec. 21, 2007
Bryant and the Lakers got their first regular-season win in Philadelphia in nearly eight years, beating the Sixers 106-101 to snap a six-game losing streak at the formerly named Wachovia Center.

Bryant had 19 points in the win, but Andrew Bynum stole the show with 24 points and 11 rebounds. Andre Miller led the Sixers with 21 points and eight assists. 

The 2007-2008 season marked the first of three straight trips to the NBA Finals for Bryant and the Lakers. They would lose the 2008 Finals to the Celtics before beating the Magic in 2009 and winning a rematch with Boston in 2010. 

Last great performance in Philadelphia — Dec. 16, 2012
This was Bryant's last vintage performance in his hometown. The 34-year old Bryant had 34 points and six assists in a 111-98 win over the Sixers. Nick Young led the Sixers with 30 points, while Evan Turner and Spencer Hawes each scored 16 points. 

Bryant's 2012-2013 campaign ended with a torn Achilles tendon late in the 80th game of the regular season. The Kobe-less Lakers were swept by the Spurs in the first round of the playoffs. 

This turned out to be Bryant's last great season. He averaged 27.3 points, 6.0 assists and 5.6 rebounds to earn First Team All-NBA honors in his 17th NBA season. 

Final game in Philadelphia — Dec. 1, 2015
Bryant's last game in Philadelphia came nearly 14 years after he was booed during the 2002 All-Star Game. That proved to be plenty of time for old wounds to heal. He was showered with applause and tributes in his Philly farewell, and for a while it looked like he would deliver one final great performance in his hometown. 

Bryant opened the game by hitting 3 of his first 4 three-point attempts, whipping the Wells Fargo Center into a frenzy. But at 37 years old, Bryant eventually ran out of gas and finished 7 of 26 from the field in a 103-91 loss to a Sixers team that entered the game with an 0-18 record. 

Bryant scored 20 points and finished his 20th and final NBA season with a 17.6 scoring average.

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Sixers Talk podcast: Will Sixers have a chip on their shoulder if playoffs happen?

nbcsp-usa-joel-embiid.jpg
NBCSP/USA Today Images

Sixers Talk podcast: Will Sixers have a chip on their shoulder if playoffs happen?

On this edition, Danny Pommells and Paul Hudrick discuss:

(2:12) — Questioning Joel Embiid's fitness is like beating a dead horse; will the Sixers have a chip on their shoulder?
(13:22) — Charles Barkley calls Moses Malone trade a disaster to his career.
(20:20) — Would the season being cancelled be worse than watching our most hated rival winning the Finals?

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