With the atrocity that this season has become, perhaps the only thing capable of putting a grin on the face of Sixers fans would be positive news about Nerlens Noel. Per CSNPhilly.com, Nerlens Noel has recently been in his practice uniform and on the court with his team during practice. Brett Brown had the following to say about Noel:
“He is slowly doing a little more physical stuff,” Brett Brown said Friday. “He is slowly doing a little more where he can play against another body. I highlight the words slowly and cautiously but he’s doing it.”
“Whether we ever get to see him in a game this year, it really is who knows,” Brown added. “But I have gone on record saying I wish I could coach him and get some games under our belt with him.
“The boxes he has to tick are the ones we have always talked about, and those have yet to be ticked.”
Brown also said that Nerlens is moving closer to playing 5-on-5, and that he is “going against bodies a little bit more”. As of right now, all signs are pointing up for the former Kentucky big man. Will we see him this season? There’s no definite answer, but with only about 20 games left in the season, it’s not looking high. Even if Nerlens Noel is ready to play with five or so games left, he should still be thrown out there to get some valuable game experience.
Nerlens still has to practice with the team and get in some sort of rhythm before he can even think about his NBA debut. However, I don’t speak for myself when I say that we all are dying to see his refined post-game and jump shot. Imagine if Noel comes into a game this year and starts knocking down mid-range jumpers like Anthony Davis has this year. Just imagine if Noel looks anything close to Anthony Davis this year, or whenever he steps onto a court. Obviously, that’s a dream — but everyone has high expectations for Nerlens Noel when he gets into game shape.
We shouldn’t expect much out of him if he does play this season, he hasn’t played real basketball in over a year and I’m sure there will be plenty of rust to knock off in that time. This is why he should get on the court during this worthless season so he can begin to get rid of some of the rust that he’s accumulated over the course of his recovery from a torn ACL.
With this season getting worse every game, seeing Nerlens Noel on the court would distract EVERYONE from all the losing and negativity that is surrounding our Sixers right now.