Sixers’ Matisse Thybulle spent summer working out with Damian Lillard

Philadelphia 76ers wing player Matisse Thybulle worked out with Portland Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard over the summer.

Philadelphia 76ers wing player Matisse Thybulle is one of the best defenders in the league. As he prepares for his fourth season, the defensive stud out of Washington already has a few All-Defensive Team appearances on his resume as he disrupts opposing game plans.

The biggest criticism of Thybulle remains his work on the offensive end.

In his third season in the league, Thybulle shot just 31.3% from deep on 2.2 attempts per game and then he shot just 28.6% from deep in the playoffs. His postseason was wrecked by his vaccination status as he was unable to play in Toronto in Round 1 of the postseason, but Canada has changed their vaccination rule so he is allowed to play in Toronto in the coming 2022-23 season.

After the Sixers were eliminated in Round 2, Thybulle vowed to become an offensive asset as he wants to be more effective on that end of the floor. Per Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer, he worked out with Portland Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard as well as other prominent shooting figures:

Thybulle spent time the summer working out with Portland Trail Blazers perennial All-Star Damian Lillard and renowned shooting coach Phil Beckner in Phoenix among other cities. Improving his outside shooting was one of his focuses. He also went to Los Angeles to work on his ball handling and finishing around the basket with Chicago Bulls All-Star DeMar DeRozan under the direction of ball-handling wiz Johnny Stephene, aka Dribble2Much and HandleLife Johnny.

It is clear and obvious that Thybulle took this summer seriously. As the Sixers are about to embark on training camp on Tuesday, they could absolutely use a much more offensive-minded Thybulle in order to help them chase their championship.

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Sixers rank 5th in power rankings of the previous five seasons combined

The Philadelphia 76ers are ranked as the 5th best team in a power ranking of the previous five seasons combined.

Five seasons in the NBA is a long time. A lot can happen over the span of five years as players and teams continue to grow and continue to chase the ultimate dream of hoisting the Larry O’Brien trophy.

That has been the main goal Philadelphia 76ers recently as they begin to move past “The Process” era and be legitimate title contenders in the Eastern Conference. Led by a superstar big man in Joel Embiid who can do it all, Philadelphia has been among the best in the East over the past five seasons combined with a win percentage of .629.

That is good enough to be among the best in the league and Bleacher Report ranked the Sixers as the 5th best team in their power rankings of the previous five seasons combined:

Essentially, it attaches the Sixers to Joel Embiid’s ascension, and they have followed his lead up the NBA ladder. In each of the last five seasons, he has been an All-Star and they’ve been a playoff participant with a .589-plus winning percentage.

However, just like Embiid has been denied an MVP award, Philly has also fallen short of winning the big one—or even the medium one. The Sixers are still searching for their first venture past the conference semis since Allen Iverson was leading the charge, which doesn’t seem possible for a club that has assembled as much talent as Philadelphia has.

The Sixers will now look to make their move in the 2022-23 season led by Embiid and James Harden. Considering the talent they have assembled on the roster, now is as good a time as any to take the next step forward in the East and look to win their first title since 1983.

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Jalen Rose criticizes both Ben Simmons and Sixers for ugly divorce

ESPN’s Jalen Rose criticizes both Ben Simmons and the Philadelphia 76ers for the ugly divorce.

The way the relationship between Ben Simmons and the Philadelphia 76ers ended certainly was ugly. The events leading up to the divorce were ugly and everything was aired out in public as the two sides looked to find a resolution.

Eventually, they did as the Sixers sent Simmons to the Brooklyn Nets in the deal that brought James Harden to Philadelphia. On Thursday, Simmons finally opened up and he discussed not only passing up the dunk against the Atlanta Hawks in Game 7, but he also discussed his holdout from the team and the mental issues that were holding him back from competing.

ESPN’s Jalen Rose blamed both Simmons and the Sixers for the ugly divorce in the aftermath of the comments on “Jalen and Jacoby”:

The Athletic questions how James Harden will look for Sixers in new season

The Athletic wonders how James Harden performs in his first full season with the Philadelphia 76ers.

As the Philadelphia 76ers prepare for the upcoming 2022-23 season, there are questions that they must answer. There is no question that the Sixers have a ton of talent. They will win a lot of games based on having the likes of Joel Embiid and James Harden leading the way.

However, how will Harden look in his first full season in Philadelphia?

The Beard did average 21 points, 10.5 assists, and 7.1 rebounds in 21 games with the Sixers, but he shot just 40.2% from the floor and 32.6% from deep in those games. His explosion going to the basket and his efficiency was not there and the question is how will he look in the new season.

The Athletic poses the question after Harden had a full summer of being able to rest the hamstring:

Does James Harden look any different from last season? The Sixers have new faces on the wing and legitimate excitement surrounding what should be a deeper, more well-rounded team. But at the risk of sounding like a broken record, everything comes back to Harden. Did the full summer off allow the 33-year-old’s hamstring to heal and regain his form from around the time he started in Brooklyn? If so, the Sixers are very much in business. Joel Embiid said Harden had morphed into more of a playmaker last season, and while that is undeniably valuable, the Sixers need a player who can also take over games with scoring when needed.

Harden will certainly have a lot of pressure on him as he gets set to begin his first full season in Philadelphia. He has done everything a player can possibly do in their NBA career except for winning a championship. It is now time for The Beard to step up and lead a team to a title and that is what the Sixers will be hoping for.

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ESPN ranks Sixers star Joel Embiid as the 4th best player in the league

ESPN’s NBARank has Philadelphia 76ers star Joel Embiid ranked as the 4th best player in the league entering the new season.

Philadelphia 76ers star Joel Embiid had one of the more extraordinary seasons in the 2021-22 season. The big fella averaged 30.6 points to become the first big man to lead the league in scoring since Shaquille O’Neal in 2000 and the first big man to average 30 in a season since Moses Malone in 1982.

Embiid was able to do it all out on the floor. He was taking defenders off the dribble, he was getting to the basket, he was knocking down jumpers, he was getting to the free-throw line, and he made it all look so easy. He shot 49.9% from the floor and he threw the Sixers on his back when the time called for it.

As the 2022-23 season gets set to begin in a few weeks, now is the time for ESPN’s NBARank of the top 100 players in the game and Embiid came in ranked fourth on the list:

Sixers 3 goals: De’Anthony Melton must stabilize, lead the bench unit

De’Anthony Melton must stabilize and lead the bench unit for the Philadelphia 76ers as they move forward.

In this continuing series, Sixers Wire looks at the 20 players, per Sportrac, that comprise the Philadelphia 76ers roster — 18 under contract and the two players on two-way deals — and gives each three goals for the 2022-23 season.

The new season begins on Oct. 18, and training camp begins on Sept. 27. Now is the time to begin previewing the new season of adventure that is Sixers basketball. Philadelphia will have to trim a few players because the active roster limit is 15.

This edition focuses on De’Anthony Melton who was acquired from the Memphis Grizzlies in a draft night trade back in June. Melton will be looking to bring his 3-and-D capabilities to Philadelphia and help move the team forward as they continue to chase down a championship.

For Melton, his three goals are as follows:

New Sixers addition PJ Tucker ranked as 17th best power forward in the NBA

Philadelphia 76ers veteran PJ Tucker comes in ranked as the 17th best power forward in the NBA heading into the new season.

As the Philadelphia 76ers prepare for the upcoming 2022-23 season, there is a lot of hype and excitement around the team. The Sixers went to work rather quickly in the offseason and they were able to address most of the issues on their roster.

One of those issues was addressed with the acquisition of PJ Tucker in free agency. Tucker is a star in his role as he offers up toughness on both ends of the floor and he is able to knock down corner triples at a high rate which is a must when playing next to James Harden.

As the new season begins to get underway, CBS Sports ranked the top 22 power forwards in the league and Tucker came in ranked 17th at the position:

As a power forward, Tucker’s top traits are his versatility and durability. He can guard both forward spots, and at times also serve as a small-ball center. Plus, he’s going to be out on the floor. He’s finished top 20 in total games played five different times in his career, and he’s led the league in that category three times. He’s also finished in the top 10 in total minutes played twice. The ability to be available for your team is very valuable, especially in today’s NBA.

Tucker is going to serve a very important role on the Sixers as they move forward with their championship plans. He won a title with the Milwaukee Bucks in 2021 and he helped the Miami Heat pull to within a game of the finals in 2022.

Now, even though he is 37 years old, the expectation is that Tucker will lift the Sixers to new heights as they look to win their first title since 1983.

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B/R suggests Sixers look into acquiring guard Alec Burks from Pistons

Bleacher Report suggests that the Philadelphia 76ers should look into acquiring Alec Burks from the Detroit Pistons.

At the moment, the Philadelphia 76ers have a pretty solid roster as they head into training camp on Tuesday, but there can always be an upgrade made everywhere.

Considering the Sixers are led by Daryl Morey, who is always actively looking for more upgrades to the roster, one can assume that Philadelphia will be in the running for a lot of moves. They did a lot of heavy lifting over the summer with the additions of PJ Tucker, De’Anthony Melton, and Danuel House Jr., but there can always be more.

Bleacher Report suggests the Sixers should give the Detroit Pistons a call and see what it will take to acquire Alec Burks. The veteran guard played 18 games for the Sixers in the 2019-20 season and he shot 41.6% from deep in those games.

B/R on the case for Philadelphia to acquire Burks:

Philly could use another playmaker on the second unit, and Burks, a career wing, just held his own as an emergency point guard for the New York Knicks (3.0 assists against 1.1 turnovers). He can manage most defensive matchups on the perimeter, and he has splashed better than 38 percent of his threes each of the past three seasons.

His skill set is the kind most contenders could stand to add, which makes it highly unlikely the rebuilding Detroit Pistons will hold on to him for long, particularly when his contract has just a team option remaining after this season.

Burks is an 11-year veteran who has plenty of playoff experience under his belt and he would be a nice addition to Philadelphia’s roster. One would have to wonder what it would take to acquire him as Detroit continues its rebuild, but if the Sixers see an opportunity to add him to the roster, one can bet Morey will figure something out.

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Ben Simmons explains passing up dunk vs. Hawks, holdout from Sixers

Ben Simmons explains passing up the dunk against the Atlanta Hawks as well as his holdout from the Philadelphia 76ers before the deal.

The big question on the minds of a lot of fans of the Philadelphia 76ers regarding the Ben Simmons saga is “why?” Why did everything go down the way it did following the team’s elimination from the 2021 playoffs against the Atlanta Hawks?

Going back to June 20, 2021, Simmons has gone through a lot. He passed up a dunk late in that Game 7, which Hawks star Trae Young defended the decision, he then was criticized in the aftermath of the game, involved in a ton of trade rumors, and then requested a trade a few weeks before training camp for the 2021-22 season.

Simmons then held out from the team citing mental health issues, he then reported to the team in the middle of the preseason, returned to practice, was kicked out of practice, and then didn’t play a single game before being sent to the Brooklyn Nets in the James Harden deal.

Simmons sat down with former Sixers guard JJ Redick on his podcast “The Old Man and the Three” and Simmons opened up on a lot of questions that are on the mind of everybody:

Ben Simmons opens up on Sixers fans, relationship with city of Philly

Former Philadelphia 76ers star Ben Simmons discusses his relationship with the city and with Sixers fans.

The saga that ended Ben Simmons’ time with the Philadelphia 76ers certainly was ugly. After a very tough ending in Game 7 of the 2021 Eastern Conference semifinals, Simmons had a tumultuous summer, leading to a trade request a few weeks before training camp.

Simmons then did not report to the team which then led to a mental health issue for him and it then led to him just not playing another game for the franchise.

Finally, after months of speculation about whether he would return and play a game for them at some point, Simmons was dealt to the Brooklyn Nets for James Harden. The Nets then made a trip to Philadelphia after the trade and Simmons was ridiculed and received a ton of boos from the Philly crowd.

Simmons hopped on “The Old Man and the Three” podcast with former teammate JJ Redick and he was asked about his time in Philadelphia and Sixers fans. Redick asked Simmons about his lack of a jump shot and it being magnified in Philadelphia.

Simmons responded with this:

People in Philly just want to have something to say about (expletive) anything, man. Like, everything. Like literally everything. I post a picture of a (expletive) car or a dog and I got reporters saying ‘You should be in the (expletive) gym’. Like, come on, man, but yeah, for sure. Philly is obviously a sports city. My experience playing there was incredible. Like, for the most part, it was incredible. I had a great time. Like, the fans are unbelievable. I still have an apartment there. So I do own some real estate in Philadelphia, still. So I feel like I’m part of Philly still, but it’s just unique. Like, even being in Brooklyn now, it’s completely different. Like this is a different experience for me and I value just that time I did spend in Philly, because I was able to learn and grow in that city and I got friends for life there. I got—my brother lives there. Like, I got family there. So, yeah. Philly’s great. I think people have like a thought that I think that I hate it.

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Please be advised that the clip below contains language that some might consider offensive.

Simmons and the Nets will play in Philadelphia on Nov. 22 and this time, the 4-time All-Star is expected to play in the contest.

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