All summer long, we’ve been getting drips and drabs of Markelle Fultz’s offseason training under the watchful eye of Drew Hanlen. A vicious dunk here, lightning-quick handles there. Sixers fans have eagerly consumed any Fultz content they come across within the social mediasphere, hoping that there’s more to Hanlen’s “I think he’s immediately an All-Star” talk than simply a man trying to hype up his business. The latest bit of sustenance hit Fultz’s Instagram Tuesday night:
The screenshot above was the third in a series of three pics, captioned by “Blood sweat and tears!” There were definitely plenty of tears in Philadelphia last year, watching the former first overall pick struggle with whatever mental block was created around his jump shot late last summer. Fultz is absolutely putting in the sweat equity this summer to try and rectify the situation. I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt on the blood part.
Look at that form though! Textbook swan follow-through with the shooting hand, along with the guide hand in the proper position. There’s no sign of discomfort in the shoulder. No evidence of whatever shot put travesty Fultz’s shooting motion had mutated into last season. Drew Hanlen is a Yoda-like figure in the background, attentively observing the proceedings. It’s glorious. Hang this image in the Louvre.
The Sixers missed out on their free agency star hunt. Fans have shifted to star developing in anticipation of building upon last year’s successful 52-win campaign. Markelle Fultz making the leap from damaged goods back to the talented combo guard we expected out of Washington represents the biggest potential area of improvement for Philadelphia’s roster this season. We’ve seen plenty of encouraging signs on social media this summer. Now, we just need to see it in live game action on the court.
The preseason contest with Melbourne United on September 28th can’t come soon enough.