The Philadelphia 76ers told everyone rather loudly on the night of the 2013 NBA Draft that they were blowing things up with their roster and looking towards rebuilding for their future. They traded away their star point guard Jrue Holiday to the New Orleans Pelicans in a deal that landed them the projected number one overall pick, Nerlens Noel, who slipped in the draft.
The Sixers were also able to pick up Holiday’s replacement in the draft when they selected point guard Michael Carter-Williams in the first round. Now that the Sixers are taking part in the Orlando Summer League, they are getting a chance to work with and develop Carter-Williams. However, the unfortunate thing is that they are unable to see what Noel can do.
Noel went down in the middle of the college hoops season with Kentucky with a torn ACL that he is obviously still recovering from. Obviously with him rehabbing from that injury and with him not projected to be able to return until midway through the regular season, he’s absent from Summer League.
The biggest disappointment for the 76ers with Noel being absent is the fact that they don’t have the ability to work on his offensive game like they have been with Carter-Williams. The Sixers know that MCW isn’t a great scorer, but they have asked him to be aggressive with his shooting in Summer League. Had Noel been healthy, the team probably would have asked him to be aggressive offensively as well, considering that’s the weakest part of his game.
The Sixers will eventually get to see how good Noel can look against NBA competition, but in this era where everyone wants some sort of instant gratification, even if that just means being able to see a player’s potential, not having Noel at Summer League has to be sort of a tough pill to swallow for Philadelphia.