2021 NBA Draft Quotebook | Morey, Springer, Bassey
On the heels of the 2021 NBA Draft, the 76ers introduced two of their new rookies on Saturday morning at their training complex in Camden. The team selected Jaden Springer, Filip Petrušev and Charles Bassey in Thursday’s draft.
Rewinding back to Thursday night, technically Friday morning, 76ers President of Basketball Operations Daryl Morey addressed the media following the conclusion of the draft. Springer and Bassey spoke Saturday.
Here’s some of what was said…
Last year’s group of newcomers raised expectations, according to Morey...
“We got three guys who are really excited to be here. We're feeling a lot of pressure as a staff because Coach Rivers and [Tyrese] Maxey, Paul Reed and Isaiah Joe all had such a great first year with us. Every year, we try to bring in new talent. Coach Rivers does such a good job developing them. So we feel a lot of pressure on making sure these players can come in and help the Sixers.”
The Sixers selected Jaden Springer No. 28 overall...
“Jaden [Springer]’s really exciting. I know GMs get killed for talking about upside, but he's not 19 yet. Already a productive player at Tennessee. We feel good about his ability to be a 3-and-D player in this league -- we all know how valuable they are. [He] was a top high school recruit...it's a good pool of players to pick from.
“We're really excited about Jaden. [It's a] position where you could see a path to him potentially getting on the floor. Usually it takes a rookie more than a year, but you never know.”
And, shortly after the selection of Petrušev, it was Bassey to the Sixers at No. 53...
“Charles Bassey led the country in defensive rebounding. He might've been number one in shot blocking among prospects. He's, again, a top-10 high school recruit. Someone who can shoot. I think with the bigs we're bringing in, we want to make sure they're switchable and can shoot. Charles has versatility there.
“We like who we picked. Shocker. Let's repeat last year. Let's do it.”
Morey knows how important such a repeat can be for the roster...
“For me, I view the draft as the really important blocking and tackling that you do if you're going to have a consistent winner like we plan to have here in Philly and have had at many points in their history...[The draft] makes you more flexible in free agency. You have Maxey coming along. Because Maxey showed us so much in year one, now you can use your free agent dollars other places and give him a real shot. It's really important, and subtle, and pushes you forward. You have to do well, and hopefully we're going to continue to do that.
“All three [draft picks] we think have a really good shot, and at positions that there's a path where if they're showing things to Coach Rivers, there may be opportunity to play.”
Springer on what he brings to the table...
“I feel like I’ll be able to bring some toughness and physicality on both ends of the court. I also feel like I can be a secondary playmaker... whatever the team would need, I feel like I can come in and make that step.”
Bassey, a big man who said he’s comfortable extending his range, is ready to get to work...
"When I came here to workout with them, when they saw me making shots, when they saw me making threes, they were surprised.
"I just feel like people still didn't know I can shoot it...They're going to see it in the summer league. I can't wait to get started with the team, and just showcase who I am as a person, as a player."