Philadelphia won today's thriller vs. the Brooklyn Nets 92-86, and there were a ton of things I liked from what I saw today, and very few things I didn't.
Casper Ware and his giant biceps do basically whatever they want on the floor. The injury to Pierre Jackson left Philadelphia with just two true ball handlers, and Ware is making the most of his opportunity. He's taken more three pointers than he should, but he is a pretty prolific scorer around the rim. Ware can really play through contact, and the most impressive thing about him is his floater in the lane, which he's knocked down on many occasions. He finished the day with 24 points on 9-17 shooting, as well as eight assists.
Nerlens Noel continues to stuff the stat sheets, finishing up today's game with 14 points, nine rebounds, five blocks, and one steal. He showed a decent touch on two of his four baskets from the floor, which were left handed floaters in the lane. He went only 3-6 from the line today, but that makes him 15-19 so far in summer league, so no room to complain there. It's hard to overstate how fun it is going to be to watch him grow with this team.
Get Ronald Roberts a contract already! Seriously, if the Sixers are just going to complete the roster with filler types, I see no reason why Roberts shouldn't take Brandon Davies or Jarvis Varnado's spot on the bench. He's by far the strongest player on the floor, and has done a real good job creating space on the low block. Roberts is a high energy type too and runs the floor very well, fitting in with Philly's style of play. I'm sold.
Travis Bader finally shot the ball well from distance, finishing with 12 points on 4-8 shooting from beyond the arc.
If Jerami Grant is out there to prove me wrong (because he clearly cares about what we think), then he's doing a very good job. His performance today was nothing but impressive; he held his own down low, and even stepped outside and knocked down two threes (including one to win the Sixers the third quarter). Going forward I think the Sixers are better suited trying to mold him as a 4, so he's gonna need to bulk up and work on his mid-range game. However, Jerami's showing some of that potential that had him talked about as a mid-first round pick at the beginning of the year. He finished the day with 12 points on 4-5 shooting and five rebounds.
It's hard to complain about his third professional game ever, but Noel still has plenty to work on. He looks very uncomfortable handling the basketball and holds it rather lose, accounting for some of his turnovers on his way to the basket. I would have liked to see him take defenders off the dribble from the foul line, but clearly he isn't ready yet. That comfort level will come with time, and when he is able to develop that it will certainly help in regards to his fit with Embiid. And despite spending all of last year trying to add some extra muscle, Cory Jefferson took him to the cleaners repeatedly down low. Stay in that weight room, Nerlens.
K.J. McDaniels was forced to leave midway through the second with a left ankle injury. He was just 1-4 from the floor with three points.
Travis Bader can't do much outside of the catch and shoot three. Really struggles to defend on ball, and not necessarily the greatest of ball handlers.
I'm struggling to see anything from Arsalan Kazemi, mostly because he's barely played in Orlando. He logged only 4:40 of action, and didn't display much of anything when he was out there. Maybe he'll get more time when he's in Vegas, but it seems like he is destined for at least another season overseas.
Philadelphia won't play again until Friday, the time yet to be determined.