Notebook | Shamet's Smarts, Muscala-Embiid Making Productive Pair

by Brian Seltzer
Sixers.com Reporter

Shamet’s Smarts

Landry Shamet’s defense and intelligence helped punch his initial ticket into the 76ers’ rotation, which needed depth on the wing after Wilson Chandler went down with a hamstring injury in the preseason.

But the Wichita State product’s shot-making has certainly helped him stick.

In Thursday’s 122-113 victory over the LA Clippers, Shamet tied a career-high with 13 points. He went 5 for 8 from the field, and 3 for 6 from the outside.

The 2018 no. 26 pick also wasn’t afraid to go toe-to-toe defensively with veteran members of LA’s backcourt, which included the feisty Patrick Beverley.

(watch Shamet here in the second quarter chase Beverley around, and help induce a missed shot)

“Landry has gained popularity with me because he guards and he’s smart,” Brett Brown said Friday. “Now, he’s making shots.”

Since training camp, it’s been well-documented that JJ Redick has taken Shamet under his wing. The 13-year vet praised the rookie for being bright.

“He picks things up pretty quick,” Redick said of Shamet.

The two sit next to each other on the team plane. Redick said they “ask each other some weird questions - everything you could think of, basketball questions and life questions.”

Lately, conversations have revolved around the highs and lows of the NBA.

“He’s observent, he’s a worker, and he wants to be good, and he has no problems working to be good,” said Redick. “He’s got a really good future in this league.”

Muscala-Embiid Pairing Producing

Recently, as Mike Muscala has gotten more and more into rhythm, and farther away from the right ankle sprain that kept him out of the first three games of the season, he’s proven to be a productive frontcourt complement to Joel Embiid.

In 72 total minutes together in six games, the duo has generated a net rating of 13.6 (114.2 offrtg / 100.6 defrtg).

So far, it’s the highest two-man net rating Embiid has produced with another player (we’re going to discount the super-elite 37.5 net rating Embiid has manufactured in just 12 minutes with Furkan Korkmaz).

Against the LA Clippers Thursday, Brett Brown went with the Muscala-Embiid combo to close out the game. Twice in the fourth quarter, Muscala found Embiid for a basket.

“I think Mike’s going to be great with us,” Brown said. “I think that he can play some five, I think that he can certainly coexist with Joel and play some four. I think his mobility defensively is the thing I liked the most. The second thing is his ability to make a 3-point shot.”

Brown maintains that Muscala, an off-season trade pick-up, will only become a better match with the Sixers over time.

“I think his athleticism, and spirit and skill package, either switching or making threes, makes him a fit with us in significant ways. I’m excited to grow Mike Muscala, but I think his fit and his pairing with the group we have and how I want to play, I think it’s a fantastic fit.”