Daniel Orton brings much-needed depth to Sixers

Daniel Orton brings much-needed depth to Sixers
October 16, 2013, 8:00 pm
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Daniel Orton was drafted 29th overall by Orlando during the 2010 NBA draft. (AP)

When the curtain rose on Wednesday for the portion of Sixers practice open to the media, center Daniel Orton was seen walking through plays.

The Sixers signed Orton, the 29th overall pick by Orlando in the 2010 draft, to a contract and waived Tim Ohlbrecht. Orton, 23, was waived by Oklahoma City last week.

Orton, 23, has played in just 29 NBA games the Magic and Thunder. He averaged 12.5 points, 8.0 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per game last season for the Tulsa 66ers of the D-League.

With the Sixers getting outrebounded by 23 in Monday’s blowout loss to the Nets and the team’s depth in the post depleted by injury, Orton was a sight for sore eyes.

“He is a big man that is mobile,” Sixers head coach Brett Brown said. “It is obvious that we need some height and some bulk, that he provides. It is just a matter of time before we learn where we can slot him in.”

The Sixers play the Bobcats on Thursday at 11a.m in Charlotte. With little knowledge of the Sixers’ system, Orton will still see playing time.

“Twelve hours after the Thunder released me, I started talking to a couple teams,” Orton said. “From watching games and seeing practice, we have a lot of young guys learning. Hopefully, by the middle of the season we can pick it up a little bit.

“The number one thing in the league is that you have to stay ready. The main thing for my career is those two words -- staying ready.”

The 6-foot-10, 255-pound Orton hardly felt lost during his first practice with the Sixers. Thaddeus Young believes only 25 percent of Brown’s system has actually been implemented to this point.

The team has dedicated itself in practice to running and getting stops. That formula placed the Sixers at a distinct disadvantage against the veteran Nets on Monday.

“We’re not as organized as we need to be in the half-court game, obviously,” Brown said. “Personally, I feel naked. I’m a little bit lost along with them because we haven’t invested the time. We’ve spent so much time trying to put our defense right and running.”

Royce White flew with his teammates to Charlotte. White shared his experience through a couple of tweets.


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