Pre-Draft Workout Recap | 5.6.19
Although the playoffs are taking center stage at this point of the NBA calendar, the 76ers have been working diligently behind the scenes to prepare for the future.
Monday morning at the 76ers Training Complex in Camden, NJ, the team held its first pre-draft workout of 2019.
For Sixers’ Senior Director of Scouting Vince Rozman, these workouts represent the next step in the arduous process of getting ready for the draft.
“The grind has started long ago,” Rozman said at Monday’s workout, which featured six players. “We’re in it.”
Rozman said some of the players participating in Monday’s workout were testing the draft waters in an effort to choose whether to return to college. Others, according to Rozman, could be candidates for summer league or G League roster spots.
“It’s valuable all the way around,” Rozman said.
The next stop on the pre-draft circuit is the NBA Combine, taking place in Chicago May 14-19. The Sixers expect to host another series of workouts in June, leading up to the draft on June 20.
Here’s a bit more about Monday’s visitors at the 76ers Training Complex:
During his decorated four-year career at Hofstra, Justin Wright-Foreman collected back-to-back Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Year honors.
“Especially being from Hofstra University, which is a mid-major school, I’m just here to show that I can play with the big boys,” the 6’2’’ Wright-Foreman said after Monday’s workout.
Wright-Foreman averaged 27.1 points and 4.0 boards in his senior season. He leaves Hofstra as the second highest scorer in program history.
Calling himself an “underrated passer,” Wright-Foreman scored 42 points and the buzzer beater to beat Northeastern on Jan. 5.
“There’s really no time to relax,” Wright-Foreman said of the pre-draft circuit. “You really have to go hard at every workout that you go to, because if you leave anything in the tank, that could be the separation from somebody picking you, and somebody not.”
Oshae Brissett averaged 14.9 points per game in his freshman season and 12.4 points per game in his sophomore season at Syracuse University. He scored 14 points and grabbed eight boards in the team’s 2019 first-round NCAA Tournament loss to Baylor.
A native of Mississauga, Ontario, Brissett attended high school at Findlay Prep, a program known for producing NBA talents including Tristan Thompson, Avery Bradley, Kelly Oubre Jr, and Allonzo Trier.
Rozman said workouts like the one the Sixers conducted Monday allow a player like Brissett, who spent the past few years in a zone defense at Syracuse, to play in a man-to-man system.
“It feels great,” Brissett said following the workout. “It’s something that I’ve been working my whole life towards. It’s a process, it’s a grind, and I’m just excited to be here.”
Washington State University
CJ Elleby had a breakout freshman season at Washington State, averaging 14.7 points and 7.1 rebounds per game. He scored a season-high 26 points (on 8-13 shooting) and 10 boards against Washington on Jan. 5.
The Seattle native was second in scoring and rebounding for the Cougars this season, leading the team in assists (3.0 apg) and steals (1.0 spg)
Elleby’s father, Bill Elleby, played college ball at California from 1988-92. A talented basketball family, Elleby’s sister Victoria also played college ball at Evergreen State College.
University of Florida
Andrew Nembhard, the second Canadian in Monday’s workout group, hails from Aurora, Ontario. In 2018-19, he earned 2019 SEC All-Freshman Team honors, along with two SEC Freshman of the Week nods.
Nembhard hit a game winner over LSU to send Florida to the SEC Semifinals on March 15. He became the first freshman to start a full season for the Gators since Bradley Beal in 2011-12.
Prior to Florida, Nembhard played high school basketball at Montverde Academy alongside RJ Barrett, a fellow Canadian and 2019 draft prospect. The school boasts some notable alumni in All-Stars Ben Simmons and D’Angelo Russell.
Appalachian State University
At Appalachian State, Ronshad Shabazz earned All-Sun Belt honors for his last three seasons. He averaged 18-plus points per game as a junior and senior.
Shabazz holds the Appalachian State program record for career field goals made, and is second in program history in points scored.
For high school, Shabazz attended Huntington Prep, a West Virginia institution that also produced Andrew Wiggins and Miles Bridges.
Oregon State University
Tres Tinkle, a native of Missoula, Montana, played three seasons (including a redshirt sophomore year) at Oregon State, starting each of his appearances over the last two seasons.
In 2018-19, Tinkle averaged a career-high 20.8 points per game, 8.1 rebounds per game, and 3.8 assists per game, shooting 48.3% from the floor. He was named to the All-Pac-12 First Team, and was a top 10 finalist for the Julius Erving Small Forward of the Year Award.
Tinkle comes from a basketball family. His father Wayne was his head coach at Oregon State. His sisters Joslyn and Elle played at Stanford and Gonzaga, respectively. Tinkle credits his father for the high basketball IQ he possessed from a young age.
“Ever since I was a kid, we were watching games. At five years old he was telling me about pindown screens,” Tinkle said. “People know I’m coachable, and I go all out every possession just because of how much I love this game, and all it’s done for me.”