Starting center Spencer Hawes has become the latest victim of the injury bug affecting half the Philadelphia 76ers roster. Hawes went down with a knee injury while doing defensive slides at training camp on Monday. He may be at full strength by the season opener, but the Sixers will need to figure who should start in his place.
The Sixers have three completely healthy centers who could take Hawes’ place if the injury is worse than expected: Solomon Alabi, Mac Koshwal and Tim Ohlbrecht.
Lavoy Allen, who started 37 games for the Sixers last season, looks healthy so far during training camp; however, he too hurt his knee during camp and is recovering from an injury he suffered during the offseason. Allen will start if his knee doesn’t bother him by Oct. 30.
The rest of the centers on the roster are recovering and some are expected to be back by January. The middle was the strongest part before injuries took a toll.
Alabi and Koshwal are looking to make the cut, while Ohlbrecht will be looking to get minutes. Alabi seems like the front-runner at this moment if Allen is out. Alabi has height to his advantage standing 7-foot-1. He also posted a double-double with the Toronto Raptors two seasons ago. He also has the most experience between the three.
Hawes isn’t posting star numbers, but he provides the Sixers with a solid presence in the paint. He averaged 11 points and 7.2 rebounds for the entire season last year. So, don’t underestimate his presence if he can’t go.