The 76ers have no plans of tweaking or altering Markelle Fultz’s shot.
“It’s reclaiming the shot that he used to have and finding that,” Sixers coach Brett Brown said before Monday’s 117-111 victory over the Toronto Raptors at the Wells Fargo Center.
“The timeline of when that happens and all that, none of us know,” Brown said. “But we all feel there is discomfort in his shoulder and it does affect his shot.”
However, the Sixers (20-20) announced in a Dec. 9 statement that the first-overall pick in June’s NBA draft was no longer experiencing soreness in his right shoulder and the scapular imbalance was resolved. Despite that, Fultz didn’t start participating on five-on-five scrimmages until Jan. 7.
Brown has always said that the guard wouldn’t play in a game until his shot passes the eye test. He has missed 36 consecutive games.
The Maryland native doesn’t have a problem getting to the rim. The release point of Fultz’s shot was above his head at the University of Washington and during the Utah Jazz Summer League in July. Now, it appears he’s pushing the ball more from in front of his body.
“I’m old. And I’ve never experienced anything like this,” Brown, 56, said of having a player lose his shot. “I really haven’t.”
The coach will personally work with Fultz to help him reclaim his old form.
“He’s a rise-up guy,” Brown said. “He’s a live ball, off-the dribble, rise-up guy. A Kyle Korver type, that wasn’t who he was. He was a wiggly, do-what-he-wants-to-guard. So you go back and you say, ‘How can you find that again?”
Fultz shot 33 percent (9 of 27) in the four games he played this season. He made only 6 of 12 foul shots and didn’t attempt a three-pointer despite being a solid long-range shooter in college. The 19-year-old made 41 percent from the college three-point line at Washington.
“The organization will help him reclaim why he was the first person chosen in the NBA draft,” Brown said.
The Sixers signed former Boston Celtics guard Demetrius Jackson to a two-way contract on Monday after releasing forward James Michael McAdoo. He will split time with the Sixers and their G-League affiliate the Delaware 87ers. Jackson can spend 23 days with the Sixers – not including time spent with them following the conclusion of the Sevens’ regular season.
The former Notre Dame standout was the 45th overall pick in the 2016 draft by the Celtics. He was waived by the Celtics on July 15. The Indiana native signed a two-way contract with the Houston Rockets on Aug. 21 before being released on Jan. 6. That’s when the Rockets signed him to a 10-day contract. However, the Sixers picked him up Monday.