Sunday, December 21, 2014

76ers host first workout, schedule another

This morning at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, the 76ers completed their first pre-draft workout. The Sixers hold the No. 16 and No. 50 picks in the 2011 NBA Draft, scheduled for June 23. Present at this morning's workout -- among other folks -- was head coach Doug Collins, general manager Ed Stefanski, team president Rod Thorn, and director of player personnel Courtney Witte.

76ers host first workout, schedule another

This morning at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, the 76ers completed their first pre-draft workout. The Sixers hold the No. 16 and No. 50 picks in the 2011 NBA Draft, scheduled for June 23. Present at this morning's workout -- among other folks -- was head coach Doug Collins, general manager Ed Stefanski, team president Rod Thorn, and director of player personnel Courtney Witte.

The workout included Lavoy Allen (Temple), Rick Jackson (Syracuse), Delvon Johnson (Arkansas), Vernon Macklin (Florida), Greg Smith (Fresno State), and Tomislav Zubcic (Croatia). If you want more in-depth details about each of these guys' credentials, you can find that in this post (save for the one switch in roster): first workout.

Immediately after today's workout, the Sixers announced that they'll host a second pre-draft workout on Monday morning. That second workout will include the following players: Joffrey Lauvergne (France), Antonio Pena (Villanova), Lester Prosper (SUNY-Old Westbury), Willie Reed (St. Louis), and Trey Thompkins (Georgia). Since many of these names are likely new to most folks, here's a quick-hit take on each guy:

1. Lauvergne, a 6-10 power forward. Projected as a second-round pick and ranked No. 58 on ESPN's board of draft talent. Only 19 years old, long and athletic, but is inexperienced and needs to add strength.

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2. Pena, a 6-8 forward who played four seasons for the Wildcats. Averaged 9.8 points and 7.1 rebounds a game last season for Villanova. Not expected to be drafted. 

3. Prosper, 6-10 forward-center.

4. Reed, a 6-9 power forward from St. Louis. Listed between the 40th and 50th best prospect in the draft so a likely second-round pick.

5. Thompkins, a 6-10 power forward from Georgia, seems to have slipped to a second-round pick. Listed as the 43rd best prospect. Smooth power forward.

Monday's workout seems very similar to today's in that there are a couple of potential prospects in the mix for the team's second-round pick, but none of them are in the range of the team's first-round pick.

After today's workout, the team made Witte available for comment. One interesting thing he said was that the Sixers (along with most teams selecting between 15-20) are having trouble getting guys into workouts because most guys think they're going to be off the board by then. Here's what Witte said: "It’s amazing. I’m not a Mathematics major, but right now there are about 20-plus people thinking they are going in the Top 15. There’s not a lot of separation, which I think lends itself to where there’s a lot of people thinking they’re going to go in front of us."

Witte also said that, because this draft doesn't have much separation, that the Sixers will likely draft for need. Here's that quote: "I think you make mistakes if the talent is equal and you have your rankings as a group are equal, then you look at need. When there is separation you can’t make a mistake."

Continued Witte: "I think this year’s draft there’s not as much separation … that’s kind of the consensus. Because there’s not a lot of separation, when you get past maybe 2 or 3, that teams are having to look more at need – as a generality."

There weren't many X's and O's coming from the workout. The team took measurements and then worked the guys out for less than an hour.

"It was all big men, so we did a lot of post work," said Temple's Allen. "A lot of screening and rolling and screening and popping and shooting jumpshots."

Allen has already worked out for the Oklahoma City Thunder, San Antonio Spurs, and Boston Celtics. He will also workout for the New Jersey Nets, New York Knicks, Los Angeles Lakers, and Atlanta Hawks. You can check out the embedded video of Allen from after today's workout. Also, if you'd like all of this info instantly, please follow on Twitter: Deep Sixer.

More on Monday.

--Kate


Each week, Kate will check in from the road and answer fan questions about the Sixers. Click here to ask Kate a question or e-mail her at kfagan@phillynews.com.

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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
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