Thursday, November 26, 2015

Witte Mocks Mock Drafts, Praises Thompkins

Georgia's Trey Thompkins Was the Most Heralded of Five Prospects the Sixers brought in on Monday.

Witte Mocks Mock Drafts, Praises Thompkins

Georgia forward Trey Thompkins was the most highly regarded of the five prospects at Monday´s workout. (Rogelio V. Solis/AP file photo)
Georgia forward Trey Thompkins was the most highly regarded of the five prospects at Monday's workout. (Rogelio V. Solis/AP file photo)

Courtney Witte, the 76ers Director of Player Personnel, couldn't hide the smirk on his face when asked a question about mock drafts.

The Sixers brought in five prospects on Monday, with 6-foot-10, 245-pound University of Georgia forward Trey Thompkins the most highly regarded among the group.

When a reporter suggested that Thompkins stock was dropping into the second round by virtually all mock drafts, Witte had heard enough.

"I can guarantee you those mock drafts are wrong," Witte said in an exasperated, but respectful manner. "He is a first round talent."

More coverage
Deep Sixer: Brackins looks to add punch
Deep Sixer: 76ers' personnel boss mocks mock drafts
Pattison Ave.: Turner and Iguodala on Kimmel
Special section: 2011 NBA Draft preview
Owls Inq.: Lavoy Allen misses Nets workout due to injury
Which of these sports leaders would get your vote for mayor of Philadelphia?
Doug Collins
Peter Laviolette
Charlie Manuel
Peter Nowak
Andy Reid

Of course we've seen other so-called first round talents last until the second round, or not get drafted at all. Either way, the Sixers, who select 16th in the first round, have had trouble getting players who are projected to be selected among the top 20 players, to come work out for the team. Kate wrote about this on Sunday.

Witte feels that Thompkins, who averaged 15.7 points and 7.8 rebounds this past season as a junior is a talented, but far from finished product.

"He is a very skilled player," Witte said.

Witte says that Thompkins has a good face-up game and showed during Monday's workout post-up skills.

"He also has a high basketball I.Q.," Witte said.

The downfall?

"It's fair to say that most people in the league want to make sure he is ready for the physicality of the NBA on a nightly basis as a power forward," Witte said. "He went a long way today to show us he could do that."

We're not sure an hour workout can prove much of anything, but the bottom line is the Sixers, who also pick No. 50 in the second round, seem to like Thompkins.

And with so many players having similar type skills, there may not be much difference between the end of the first round and the midway point of the second. projects Thompkins to be selected as the 11th pick in the second round, 41st overall.

Thompkins says he doesn't look much at mock drafts, the internet or newspapers, which probably boosts his stock with NBA teams.

He says he has been to Chicago, Milwaukee and Charlotte for workouts with one also scheduled with the New York Knicks. Thompkins isn't shy about expressing a potential role he could play.

"I know a lot about the Sixers and have a lot of friends who play for the Sixers and I have watched them closely," he said. "I feel I can contribute right away." 

If that is the case, then he would have indeed been ranked low in the various mock drafts.


Recapping Monday's Workout

Besides Thompkins, the other players the Sixers brought in were 6-8 forward Antonio Pena from Villanova, 6-11 forward Joffrey Lauvergne of France; 6-10 center Lester Prosper of Division III SUNY-Old Westbury (NY); and 6-9 forward Willie Reed of St. Louis.

Do we detect a pattern here?

Nobody under 6-8 came to the workout. On Saturday the Sixers brought in four power forwards, one center and one small forward.

Inquiring reporters checked to see if there was sign at PCOM saying "No guards allowed."

Of course the Sixers have made no secret that they are looking for size in this draft.

Reed is an interesting player in that he was suspended from the University of St. Louis this season for violating the school's code of conduct. As a sophomore he averaged 12.4 points and 7.9 rebounds.

As for the others, well, they are looking to get teams to look at them. Pena is an example.

He was a selfless player at Villanova, having averaged 9.8 points and 7.1 rebounds as a senior. Pena also worked out for Cleveland and will have a workout with New Jersey. 

"I am given a chance and whatever chance it is very humbling," Pena said. 

Witte says it was a great workout, which keeps a record in tact. When hasn't a team said that things went great during these settings?

Either way, the Sixers will bring in players later this week and word has it that the group could include somebody who might even be listed in the first round of a mock draft.

Stay tuned.

Inquirer Staff Writer
We encourage respectful comments but reserve the right to delete anything that doesn't contribute to an engaging dialogue.
Help us moderate this thread by flagging comments that violate our guidelines.

Comment policy: comments are intended to be civil, friendly conversations. Please treat other participants with respect and in a way that you would want to be treated. You are responsible for what you say. And please, stay on topic. If you see an objectionable post, please report it to us using the "Report Abuse" option.

Please note that comments are monitored by staff. We reserve the right at all times to remove any information or materials that are unlawful, threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, pornographic, profane, indecent or otherwise objectionable. Personal attacks, especially on other participants, are not permitted. We reserve the right to permanently block any user who violates these terms and conditions.

Additionally comments that are long, have multiple paragraph breaks, include code, or include hyperlinks may not be posted.

Read 0 comments
comments powered by Disqus
About this blog

Keith Pompey has been an Inquirer reporter since September 2004 and took over the Sixers beat in the summer of 2013 after covering Temple basketball and football for the previous three years.

Marc Narducci has served in a variety of roles with the Inquirer since beginning in 1983. He has covered the 76ers as a backup and a beat writer. In addition, Narducci has covered everything from the Super Bowl to the World Series and a lot in between.

Keith Pompey Inquirer Staff Writer
Marc Narducci Inquirer Staff Writer
Latest Videos:
Also on
letter icon Newsletter