Nerlens Noel wants his jersey number to acknowledge teams that passed on him

Kentucky forward Nerlens Noel. (Phil Sandlin/AP)

Recent draft day addition Nerlens Noel may not be ready to hit the hardwood for a few months, but he already knows what number he wants to sport with the Sixers.

According to an ESPN report, Noel wants to wear No. 5 in Philadelphia, in honor of the number of teams that passed on him on draft day.

Noel was widely projected as the top pick leading up to the draft, but injury issues and concerns about his crew caused him to slip to No. 6, where he was selected by the New Orleans Pelicans before being traded to Philadelphia.

Noel was visibly upset as other names continued to be called before his own at the draft, and he has apparently held on to some of those frustrations.

It’s a good sign for the Sixers that Noel appears to have a chip on his shoulder, as he might approach his rehab with a little more urgency and drive than Andrew Bynum did.

Sixers second-year forward Arnett Moultrie currently wears No. 5 however, so the two will have to come to an off-court agreement if Noel is set on using the number as motivation.

While it will be interesting to see who sports the number for the Sixers this season, it is safe to assume that most in the organization will be more concerned with Noel’s numbers on the court, rather than that on his jersey.