Give and Go: Do Sixers really deserve an All-Star?


Give and Go: Do Sixers really deserve an All-Star?

Each week, we'll ask questions about the Sixers to our resident basketball analysts and see what they have to say.

Running the Give and Go this week are columnist John Gonzalez, producer/reporter Matt Haughton and CSN anchor Amy Fadool.

Does any Sixer really deserve to be an All-Star?

If anyone deserves it, it's Thad Young. He's having an excellent season -- career-bests in points, steals and assists per game, three-point percentage and three-pointers made per game. Plus he's still an excellent defender, and his per-game rebounds are in line with the best numbers of his career. Not to mention that the East -- as Kramer once said about the Ukraine -- is weak. That should help Young.

Evan Turner appeared to be the Sixer with the best chance at an All-Star nod earlier in the season before tailing off. Young would clearly be the only one on the team with a serious case at this point. He is putting up a career-best season, all while hearing his name pop up in trade rumors. The only thing that might hold him back is the Sixers' poor record.

One thing I admire about the NBA is that it doesn't have an All-Star from every team like you see in MLB. Not every team has a true "All-Star," and as the Sixers have seen over the last few years, you don't automatically get one. Having said that, I think Young is having an All-Star stretch, and I would give him the nod. Over a recent eight-game stretch, Young averaged 26.5 points per game and 7.5 rebounds per contest. Oh, and the Sixers won five of those eight games. So he's certainly proving that he's invaluable to the Sixers. However, I'm not sure Young will get enough recognition to get the All-Star honor.

Report: Sixers exec Jason Wiley led meeting on national anthem issue

Report: Sixers exec Jason Wiley led meeting on national anthem issue

The Sixers' meeting on Thursday to address the national anthem situation on opening night was led by VP of Content and Integrated Marketing Jason Wiley, John Gonzalez reported.

Wiley and team executives decided not to have Sevyn Streeter perform the national anthem because she wore a "We Matter" shirt, according to the report. The team had concerns Streeter would have further protests. 

A member of the Sixers' dance team performed in her place.

Wiley helped book Streeter, according to the report, and had previously worked for Bad Boy Records and had music industry contacts.

CBS3 reported Thursday that Streeter had signed a contract that barred her from making a political statement during the performance (see story).

The Sixers discussed the incident and are considering options on how to address it (see story).

“I think the team, not only do we want to speak up on the matter that happened yesterday, but I feel like we’re now starting to push, like it’s not just about saying something, it’s about making a difference,” Nik Stauskas said. “It’s about going out there and doing something. So we don’t really know what we’re going to do yet, but I know a lot of guys on this team are eager to go out there and make a difference one way or another.”

Brett Brown: Sixers' Nik Stauskas set for 'breakout year'

Brett Brown: Sixers' Nik Stauskas set for 'breakout year'

CAMDEN, N.J. — The irony of Nik Stauskas’ reputation as a three-point shooter is that he doesn’t view himself that way.

Stauskas was drafted eighth overall by the Kings in 2014 after shooting 44.1 percent from three over two years at Michigan. But that’s not how he envisioned himself being in the pros.

“It’s crazy,” Stauskas said after practice Thursday. “I know I was a great shooter coming out of Michigan, but I don’t consider myself a shooter. I consider myself a gamer. I don’t think I’m an effective NBA player when I just stand and spot up and shoot threes. That’s really not my game.”

Stauskas has struggled to find offensive consistency in the NBA. The third-year two-guard averaged 32.4 percent from long range in his first two seasons. He wasn’t reliable as a knockdown shooter and bounced in and out of the starting lineup last season.

Rather than being a finesse player, Brett Brown encouraged Stauskas to get aggressive. Brown wanted to a see an edge from Stauskas and not hold back at the basket.

Stauskas displayed that side to his game on opening night against the Thunder. In 23 minutes off the bench, he scored 13 points on 5-for-6 shooting. His only miss came on a three-point attempt. His 83.3 shooting percentage was a single-game career high.

“He was cocky,” Brown said. “He was in attack mode. He was not afraid to put it to the floor and get to the rim. I feel like he’s got a real chance to have a breakout year. We need him to have a breakout year.”

The Sixers picked up the options on Stauskas, Joel Embiid and Jahlil Okafor on Thursday.

“I think the statement the club made on his contract lets him probably have a little bit more comfort on what we think of him,” Brown said. “I was really happy with his swagger last night.”

Stauskas is figuring out his role on the Sixers this season. It is one that can change often given injuries. A key to being successful, whether he is on the perimeter or at the rim, is feeling confident and in a rhythm on the floor.

“I had fun out there,” Stauskas said. “More than anything, I think yesterday was the first time in a while that I’ve really enjoyed myself out there and had a smile on my face.”