The media was able to watch the end of the 76ers intersquad scrimmage Tuesday at St. Joseph’s University’s Hagan Arena and the first thing that stood out was the intensity of the players.
Gone are the days when players are using camp to get in shape, at least that is the case with the Sixers.
With so many minutes up for grabs and this being the deepest team by far in coach Doug Collins’ three seasons with the team, players are taking things extremely seriously.
Here are a few impressions after watching the end of the scrimmage and then hearing the comments of assistant coach Brian James, who was designated to talk to the media after the session.
Keep in mind, we got to see about 15 minutes, so these impressions are based on a small sample size, but in that time, the players were really getting after it.
*James said after two days that Dorell Wright has been lights out as a shooter. His teammates have talked about Wright’s deadly aim from the corner three. “When he misses an open three, everybody is surprised,” James said.
*Jason Richardson looks like he has a chance to have a significant impact. James talked about how Richardson already has shown leadership, gathering the players together after the first night’s workout and telling them they were complaining too much to the officials who were working the team’s scrimmages.
Richardson is a career .372 three-point shooter so he will be able to open the court and as a 12th year veteran, his all-business attitude will have a major impact on this still young team.
*With so many players vying for perimeter minutes, it’s important that Evan Turner has a strong camp. Turner’s biggest contribution on this team could be his defense and rebounding. In the limited time we saw him Tuesday, Turner seemed to be forcing the issue offensively.
*James talked about how the team is going to put the ball even more in point guard Jrue Holiday’s hands. Remember, Holiday had a better postseason than regular season and he appears ready to pick up where he left off. In Tuesday’s scrimmage he exuded great confidence.
*Whether Villanova’s Maalik Wayns earns any minutes or not, one thing is for sure – he will make the guards work hard in practice. Wayns has a chance to be a strong on-the-ball defender and his quickness on the defensive end was evident on Tuesday.
*The Sixers had everybody but Andrew Bynum practice.