After a heartbreaking postseason loss, the 76ers have revamped their lineup with key acquisitions such as Al Horford and Josh Richardson. Wilmington got the first taste of this new-and-improved lineup on October 5th as the Fieldhouse hosted a Blue v. White exhibition game.
The Sixers decided to start their title quest at the home of Blue Coats, their Gatorade League affiliate, as a way to give back to the Wilmington community and further develop a relationship with fans in and around the city.
The scrimmage started out with the starting five (Blue Team) going up against Trey Burke, Matisse Thybulle, Mike Scott, James Ennis and Kyle O’Quinn (White Team).
The Blue Team beat the White Team, 88-66, but who cares?
Here are observations from the intersquad scrimmage.
- There is nothing flashy about Horford but man, he is just good. You can see how his versatility will help this team on both ends. Defensively, he’s an excellent communicator and is so cerebral, as evidenced by the way he handled getting switched onto Burke. On offense, his ability to stretch the floor (he hit a three at the top of the key after a Simmons’ drive and kick) and to cut and pass are huge assets.
- Josh Richardson had a few nice moments Saturday. He hit a nice foul line jumper in a pick-and-roll. On defense he got a nice deflection that led to a Simmons’ steal. That triggered a fast break. Simmons pulled it out after the initial break was slowed but he passed it off to Richardson on the wing who took advantage of the defense napping with a smooth drive and finish. He also took Zhaire Smith off the dribble for a layup with the shot clock winding down in the middle of the third. Smooth may be the best word to describe Richardson. He’s a terrific athlete and it makes his movements look effortless.
Embiid & Simmons
- Embiid and Simmons didn’t really stand out offensively — though it’s fair to say not many did — but as mentioned, the entire starting unit looked scary at times defensively. Embiid played just the first half, which we were told would be the case pregame.