Although many Philadelphia 76ers fans were looking forward to seeing what exciting dynamic rookie Jordan McRae would bring to Philly for the upcoming season, that unfortunately won’t be happening, as the Sixers’ second round pick has signed with Australia’s Melbourne United.
This normally wouldn’t seem like a big deal, as most late second round draft picks fall short of ever seeing significant time on the court, but anyone who witnessed McRae tear up the Las Vegas Summer League would know he could have been one of the team’s most viable options on the perimeter. During his four outings in Vegas, McRae averaged 21 points per game on 50 percent shooting. This ability to put points up in bunches is exactly why head coach Brett Brown’s squad will suffer with McRae being overseas for the 2013-14 season.
When you look at the current roster, there isn’t much depth or certainty throughout the entire team,with the exception of reigning Rookie of the Year, Michael Carter-Williams running the show. This becomes especially true for the questions surrounding who will emerge as the primary shooting guard options, which is where McRae would have come in handy.
As it stands now, Tony Wroten is looking like he will begin the season as the starting shooting guard. Outside of him, the only other options appear to be a frequently injured Jason Richardson, Elliot Williams and rookie K.J. McDaniels should be able to man this position at times. Neither of the guys I just mentioned really have too much to bring to the table offensively, with the exception of Wroten being able to have a breakout game every once in a while. That said, with a shooting guard with the outside touch, athleticism and defensive potential that McRae possesses, finding minutes would be far from an issue and the scoring ability he has could have eventually placed him in a starting role by season’s end.
This just goes to show the lack of options offensively for the Sixers, which should have been more of a reason for McRae to stay in Philadelphia and start establishing his name in the NBA. Rather, he’s now in Australia and although the Sixers still have the rights to McRae, they’re backcourt has taken a nice sized his with his preseason departure.