After finishing the truncated regular season inside the G League Bubble with a 10-5 record, the Delaware Blue Coats earned the 4-seed in the league’s eight-team, single-elimination playoff bracket. Tonight marks the first-ever playoff appearance for the Blue Coats, who operated as the Delaware 87ers from 2013 through 2018, before taking on the Blue Coats name prior to the 2018-19 season.
Three members of the Sixers will take the court tonight for Delaware, headlined by two-way player Paul Reed, who has been absolutely crushing the competition in the G League Bubble. Across the Blue Coats’ 15 games, Reed has averaged 22.3 points, 11.8 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 1.9 steals, and 1.8 blocks, while shooting 58.8 percent from the field and 44.4 percent from 3. BBall Paul is getting a lot of buzz as the potential G League MVP.
Final WARP for the G League regular season. Note that unlike the WARP ratings I calculate for NBA players, these are not position-adjusted, so the top of the leaderboard tends to be heavy on bigs. pic.twitter.com/hZaDhul0w7— Kevin Pelton (@kpelton) March 8, 2021
Could Reed and Joel Embiid team up for an NBA-G League MVP sweep? Time will tell.
Electric first step by Paul Reed on this dunk over Trevon Scott of the Salt Lake City Stars. pic.twitter.com/XbgJmpu9tR— Austin Krell (@NBAKrell) March 6, 2021
Meanwhile, Sixers second-round pick Isaiah Joe just joined the Blue Coats in Orlando last week. Joe struggled in his first game with Delaware on Friday, shooting just 2-of-14 from the floor. His second game Saturday was only slightly better, as Joe shot 5-of-12 from the field (2-of-7 from 3) for 12 points. We’ve seen Joe scorch the nets at the NBA level, however, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see the former Arkansas guard light it up tonight after a few additional days to get comfortable in the Bubble.
Heck of a two-way play by Isaiah Joe. pic.twitter.com/BRvA5FmBXZ— Austin Krell (@NBAKrell) March 6, 2021
Finally, the last Sixer donning a Delaware jersey tonight is the team’s other two-way player, Rayjon Tucker. Tucker played 20 games for the Utah Jazz last season, but hasn’t yet appeared in a game for the Sixers. In 15 games for Delaware this year, he has averaged 19.4 points, 4.7 rebounds, 4.1 assists, and 1.2 steals, shooting 43.0 percent from the field and 30.3 percent from 3. As a former part of Dunk City at Florida Gulf Coast, Tucker can always provide entertainment:
After the zero-intensity atmosphere of last night’s NBA All-Star game, the one-and-done intensity of these G League playoffs should prove a jarring, but welcome change. The game is being televised nationally on ESPNews, so tune in to see if BBall Paul and company can survive and advance.
Who: No. 4 Delaware Blue Coats vs. No. 5 Austin Spurs
When: 8:15pm ET
Where: ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, Orlando, FL
Listen: Rowan Radio 89.7 WGLS-FM