After being the talk of the town since his days in a Roman Catholic jersey, Philadelphia 76ers rookie guard Maalik Wayns has hit a snag in his red carpet running right through the Wells Fargo Center.
The former Villanova Wildcat is having difficulty fitting into a very competitive lineup and rotation being headed by a short-list of reliable guards. Between Jrue Holiday, Royal Ivey, Jason Richardson & Nick Young, Wayns can only watch as his playing time dwindled after the preseason.
“This is all part of the NBA,” Wayns said. “I’ve got a lot of great players in front of me. Jrue Holiday is playing like an All-Star right now, Royal Ivey brings something to the court. I’m just waiting my turn and for my opportunity, whether that’s in practice or if that’s pumping the guys up on the bench.”
One of the reasons Wayns is so liked in the Philadelphia area isn’t just because he’s a native-son of the city, it’s much more than that. He’s loved so much because of his winning attitude and desire to play for the place where he grew up loving the one thing that he knows best.
Wayns will get his chance though.
In the first 10 games of the 2012-2013 NBA regular season, Wayns has played 21 minutes total for the Doug Collins coached 76ers. Wayns will receive his chance when the time is right, Collins loves Philadelphia prospect players.
Even though there is more of a love for veterans over rookies in the mind of Collins, Wayns has impressed several coaches and players in the club’s camp.
“I really have no complaints. I’m learning a lot, a whole lot. I’m learning a lot from Jrue, even though he’s been in the league for 4 years. Thad helps me a lot, J-Rich, all those guys help me a lot. They tell me to stay ready and that’s what I’m going to do.”
As long as Wayns keeps seeing the big picture, his vision will see him on the floor quicker than his first step when cutting to the rim.
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