Sixers coach Doug Collins' excitement over the start of the NBA season outdoes any type of hyperness a child could have the night before Christmas. The man just loves the game that much.
Yesterday at the team's practice facility at PCOM, Collins and president Rod Thorn met with the media and spoke of what they expect from the team, which should open training camp on December 9th to prepare for the shortened 66-game season.
Among the highlights, Thorn said that the team very much wants to keep free agent swingman Thaddeus Young on the team, but at a reasonable price. "We love him," said Thorn. He also added that there are many teams that are under the salary cap, some significantly, and someone could make a significant offer. "And it only takes one," Thorn said.
Collins said that he has kept a close eye on rookie center Nikola Vucevic's play in Montenegro, and that he is very impressed with the USC product. Collins praised Vucevic's outside shooting as well as his court awareness and post play. Collins did say that Vucevic will have to work on his defense, particularly on ball screens.
Collins also said that he is hyped about the confidence that second year swingman Evan Turner has shown, and that Turner believes "he is the best player on the team. And I like that." The coach said he believes that Turner and Andre Iguodala will make a good pair on the court together, something people doubted last season. He says the two proved they could by playing so well together in the Miami Heat playoff series in April.
The doors will be open for players at PCOM Thursday if any are interested in working out and getting treatment from the training staff, something they weren't allowed to do during the workout. Communication with coaches is still relegated "to a hello," according to Collins. The team said they don't which, if any, players will be there. If i was a betting man, I'd say Elton Brand and Craig Brackins will make apperances.
More later. Covering La Salle-Northeastern tonight.