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6 G | 26.2 MPG | 10.7 PPG (46.3 FG%) | 31.6 3FG% | 6-19 3FGM | 80.0 FT% | 4.8 RPG
• The final player added to the Sixers’ roster this season, Poythress signed a 10-day contract April 2nd via a medical hardship exception. There was need for an extra body after the Sixers announced that Robert Covington (right knee) and Jahlil Okafor (right knee) would be sidelined for the final two weeks of the year.
• Although his stint with the Sixers was brief, Poythress didn’t pass up chances to contribute. Serving primarily as a back-up to Dario Saric, he logged at least 23 minutes in each of his six outings, his tenure bookended by back-to-back double-figure scoring outings. In Poythress’ final two contests of the season, he combined to generate a total of 33 points on 14 for 22 shooting.
• An undrafted four-year product from Kentucky, Poythress enjoyed quite the journey in his first professional campaign. After latching on with Orlando in the summer league, the 23-year old landed a spot with Indiana in the pre-season. He then went to the NBA Development League with Fort Wayne, where he achieved All-Star status. Most notably from his time with the Mad Ants, Poythress showed an improved scoring touch, posting 18.5 points per game on 52.8 shooting. His hard work and persistence were ultimately rewarded in the form of the Sixers calling him up to the NBA.
Upon signing with the Sixers, Poythress indicated he’d be taking a business-like approach to his late-season assignment, and his first career NBA basket certainly suggested as much. Making his debut April 2nd in Toronto, there was nothing bashful or restrained about this authoritative take to the rim, which tied the tilt at 22-22.
It’s no secret. The Sixers’ objective is to build a team that revolves around defense, pace, and space. In adding players to the roster, the club seeks people who check at least two of these three boxes. As far as Poythress is concerned, the Sixers were confident he’d be able to hold his own defensively, and play with speed. Three-point shooting was a different story, as Poythress’ track record in the area was less proven. Brett Brown, however, suspected that somewhere within the Tennessee native’s skill set, a perimeter touch existed. Against Indiana April 10th, that hunch panned out, as Poythress opened the game 5 for 5 from beyond the arc.
Poythress’ most well-rounded performance in a Sixers uniform was his last one of the year. To culminate an encouraging first season in the pros, he made his first NBA start, and established a personal-high by scoring 18 points (9-14 fg) against the Knicks on April 12th at Madison Square Garden.
Statement for the Summer:
“I’m just hoping to build. It’s going to be a constant grind for me. I don’t have a luxury to take days off, go on vacation or anything. I still got to get in the gym, work on my game, stay in shape, and just try to build on what I’ve built so far.”
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