Year-In-Review | Robert Covington
67 G | 31.6 MPG | 12.9 PPG (39.9 FG%) | 33.3 3FG% | 137 3FGM | 82.2 FT% | 6.5 RPG | 1.5 APG | 1.9 SPG
• Since the Sixers snatched Covington out of the NBA Development League in November of 2014, his primary task has been to turn himself into a difference-making 3-and-D wingman. Three years into his tenure with the team, the Tennessee State product appears to be well on his way to accomplishing this aim. In what was arguably his most impactful campaign to-date, Covington finished the regular season tied for fourth in the NBA with 1.9 steals per game, 0.1 steal off the league’s top mark. Covington’s 4.2 deflections created per contest led all players in the NBA, and, according to ESPN.com, he was the league’s top-rated defensive small forward (4.33 defensive real plus-minus).
• On the offensive end of the floor, Covington was pacing the healthy, active members of the Sixers’ roster with an average of 12.9 points per game until a right knee injury cost him his final eight games of the year. At the outset of the season, the 26-year old’s typically-dependable 3-point touch was erratic, as he shot just 28.7 percent (49-171) through his first 29 games. The flip of the calendar from 2016 to 2017, however, was accompanied by better results from beyond the arc, as Covington closed the season shooting at a 36.5 3-point clip.
• In an attempt to use statistics to capture the effectiveness of Covington’s two-way play, we’ll throw out a couple more numerical notes. First, he turned in eight 20-point, 10-rebound performances this season, the highest total on the Sixers. Furthermore, and perhaps most impressively, Covington became just the seventh player in NBA history to register minimums of 12.5 points per game, 6.0 rebounds per game, 1.5 steals per game, and 130 3-pointers in back-to-back seasons.
Like T.J. McConnell, Covington delivered his fair share of clutch deposits this season. In addition to sinking a pair of pivotal last-second baskets in the Sixers’ two meetings with Portland, Covington also came up with a critical shot in the Sixers’ January 3rd 93-91 triumph over Minnesota. The win helped jumpstart the club’s big month.
Throughout his third season with the Sixers, Covington proved to be a willing, successful finisher at the rim. His 43.8 field goal percentage, 172 total points, and 64.9 points percentage off drives were all career-highs.
Not only were Covington’s 24 points and 13 rebounds in a March 9th meeting with the Trail Blazers among his most prolific totals of the season, they carried weight. His putback on the offensive glass as time expired sent the game, an eventual 114-108 loss, to overtime.
Statement for the Summer:
“The mentality around here is amazing. We definitely have a different mentality, considering we have all the resources we need in order for us to get better. We just got to come in, put in the work, put in the time, and we’re going to do that. Throughout the summer, I’m going to watch film on myself, watch other players.”