CAMDEN, N.J. — For the second time in three years, the Sixers have acquired a player from the University of Washington on draft night.
The team traded for the rights to defensive-minded wing Matisse Thybulle in another deal with the Boston Celtics. The Sixers traded pick Nos. 24 (Ty Jerome) and 33 (Carsen Edwards) to Boston for the rights to draft Thybulle at No. 20.
Thybulle, 22, is the two-time Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year. He put up lofty steal and block numbers over the last two seasons in the Huskies’ zone defense. He averaged 3.5 steals and 2.3 blocks playing as a free safety. Thybulle, who is 6-foot-5 with a reported 7-foot wingspan, doesn't think the adjustment to a man-to-man scheme will be a big one.
“If you look back, I think I still led the Pac-12 in steals when I played under Coach [Lorenzo] Romar," Thybulle said. "We played man and we switched everything. For me it’s just a matter of figuring it out and I’m not worried that I’m not going to be able to, because I’ve played man my whole life except for two years.”
While Thybulle shot the three well over his first three college seasons (37.9 percent), he shot just 30.5 from distance this season. He’s also not likely to become a primary ball handler or scorer. If his shot improves, he could give the Sixers a coveted 3-and-D wing.
He fits the description GM Elton Brand laid out on Tuesday as a mature player with a discernible NBA skill.
"I definitely plan on coming in and contributing," Thybulle said. "I don’t see why not. Defense translates, and for me defense is effort, and I can bring effort day in and day out. Three-point shooting is something that comes naturally to me and I think that will be a big asset with all the talented scorers we have, to surround them with shooters. I don’t think there will be a problem with me stepping in and contributing.”
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