76ers prep for first action

76ers practiced today at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine before flying to Roanoke, VA. for the first of back-to-back preseason games against the New Jersey Nets and then, in Manchester, N.H., the Boston Celtics. Sixers play New Jersey tomorrow night at the Roanoke Civic Center. If you want to follow Deep Sixer on Twitter, click here: Deep Sixer.

Although it's not definitive, Sixers coach Doug Collins will likely start a lineup of Jrue Holiday, Andre Iguodala, Thaddeus Young, Elton Brand, and Spencer Hawes. Collins said rookie Evan Turner will play primarily as a backup point guard and said "that's where he's comfortable." As for today's practice, Tony Battie (right knee) did not practice, James Florence (hamstring), did not practice, Andres Nocioni (left ankle) was limited to non-contact drills, and Jrue Holiday (under the weather) was held out of contact drills/scrimmaging. 

Collins said he wouldn't dress Battie or Nocioni tomorrow, although he seems hopeful that by Friday of this week Nocioni would be cleared to begin scrimmaging.

"I talked to our guys about time: nobody will play more than 24 minutes," Collins explained of the preseason game. "I’ll try to script it a little bit so I know beforehand who I’m playing with who. And even if the game is in the balance, I’m not necessarily going to run guys out there to win that game."

Collins said there was much of the offense, specifically the pick-and-roll sets, that he has yet to install. He said he felt guys would have a tendency to rely on the pick-and-roll if implemented, and he really wants the team to run a 5-man offense right now. Although necessary, Collins said the on-ball screen was often "bailout action."

Because Holiday was held out of the team's end-of-practice scrimmage, Turner was running the point spot for the blue team (technically the first unit). In the limited time we watched, Turner looked good. He was guarded by Chris Quinn for the beginning portion and Jodie Meeks for the latter portion. Turner hit an open three pointer from the top of the key and freed himself for a pull-up jumper along the baseline. Collins said the scrimmage, sans Holiday, was good for Turner.

There should be a video of Turner embedded in this post. When asked about his first NBA training camp, Turner said his vision of camp was that he'd "want to throw up and cry," but that he enjoyed camp -- he used the word 'pleasant.'

Swingman Andre Iguodala and forward Jason Kapono spent a lot of extra time on the court today shooting. Iguodala was the last guy out of the gym.

We'll have more tomorrow from Roanoke.

--Kate

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