Next Up, Thunder

by Lauren Rosen

Scene Setter:

The 76ers will look to rise to a 2-1 summer league record Monday as they face the Oklahoma City Thunder at Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas.

To tip off summer league, the Sixers split a back-to-back, starting with Friday's 107-106 win over the Milwaukee Bucks, followed by Saturday's 96-82 loss to the Boston Celtics.

Zhaire Smith has had a hot start to his summer league, tallying 14 points and four rebounds against the Celtics and 10 points, three boards, and five assists against the Bucks.

Norvel Pelle, who signed a two-way contract with the Sixers prior to their departure, has started his time in Vegas with a bang. The big man recorded nine points, 13 boards, and three blocks Friday, then added 12 points, seven rebounds, and three blocks Saturday.

“He makes my life ten times easier,” said Shake Milton, who himself signed a multi-year deal with the team over the weekend. “That’s my guy, I’m really happy for him.”

Fellow two-way player Marial Shayok shone in his summer league debut, scoring 19 points, including three 3-pointers in six attempts. He produced 14 points, four boards, and a pair of assists in Saturday’s contest.

First-round pick Matisse Thybulle has shown promise as well, grabbing three steals in Friday’s contest, and hitting four 3-pointers on Saturday.

“I think Matisse shooting the ball has been really encouraging,” Johnson said. “He looks good, he looks confident out there.”

The Sixers' offense was humming early in their first game, as the team ultimately shot 46.7% from the field against Milwaukee. The club will look to tap into that initial offensive momentum again in Monday's game, which tips off at 3:00 p.m. ET.

Opponent Outlook:

The Thunder played their first summer league contest Saturday, falling to the Utah Jazz, 78-66. Hamidou Diallo led the Thunder with 20 points and five rebounds in the contest, while Kevin Hervey, a rookie out of UT Arlington, added a 11-point, 12-rebound double-double.

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