Carter-Williams is learning the bumps and bruises of the NBA
Michael Carter-Williams had eight points against the Spurs on Monday. Tony Parker finished the game with 14 points and also had nine assists. (AP)
Michael Carter-Williams was coming off the first poor performance of his rookie campaign. Against the Spurs, the rookie point guard was 2 for 11 from the floor and finished with eight points, four assists, three steals and three blocked shots.
Carter-Williams’ eight points was his first single-digit scoring output of the season.
The numbers were OK, but he had little impact on the game while his San Antonio counterpart controlled the show.
“There is a lot for me to take from that game, especially from Tony Parker,” Carter-Williams said. “He runs his team extremely well. I hope to run my team and know my teammates like he knows his someday. He knows where they are at all times. He knows where they are supposed to be. He knows where they like to shoot, and I hope one day to have a team and be on a team like that.”
The thing that Carter-Williams needs to remember is that Parker did not become the perennial All-Star he is overnight. Parker is in his 13th NBA season and has won three NBA championships.
Sixers head coach Brett Brown remembers watching a young Parker become a man among the best basketball players in the world during his days in the Spurs' organization.
“The history with Tony, I saw him at such a young age and I saw him grow,” Brown said. ”I think it is more important when you look at holistic things that you can share with Michael as it relates to Tony.”
When Brown refers to “holistic things” he is talking about taking care of the body and dealing with the likes of this week when the Sixers play four games in five nights.
Carter-Williams did not practice Tuesday because he was experiencing soreness in his left foot. He and Brown both said it was nothing serious, but resting seemed the right way to go with the schedule that is on the horizon.
MCW didn’t take the court Tuesday, but he still managed to work at his craft.
“He is very curious. He is very inquisitive,” Brown said of Carter-Williams. “He wants to know why. He wants to know how. How did Tony Parker do this? What is the best way to guard John Wall? He is always asking really good questions. You will notice he often comes back to the timeout just to make sure he understands what I have drawn, what I have said.
“From a professional standpoint, he is doing well. From a physical standpoint, he is learning how to get through it and take care of his body.”
So which has been the harder adjustment for Carter-Williams: Physical or mental?
“Tough question. Both have been pretty tough, but probably the mental aspect of it,” Carter-Williams said. “We had a little setback versus the Spurs, but I am staying positive and trying to keep working.
“It is a long season and a long grind, so I am just trying to take it one day at a time.”
The Sixers entertain the 5-3 Houston Rockets Wednesday night.