Sixers bench players with the most to prove

Sixers (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Sixers (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /
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Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports /

To have reserves come in and maintain an early lead or close a gap while starters sit, consistency is the key. If you look at bench units like the Los Angeles Lakers, Utah Jazz, and Los Angeles Clippers, they have players that can be counted on each night. For Philly, Shake Milton has proved himself their most dependable scorer. Unfortunately, he missed a number of games that severely impacted the reserve rotation and production.

In the meantime, a few Philadelphia 76ers bench players still have a lot to prove as the playoffs draw closer. Let’s look at several players who must step up so that the Sixers can be primed for a deep playoff run.

Sixers bench players with most to prove: Dwight Howard

When Dwight Howard was signed in the off-season, it was as much a surprise for Sixers fans as for Lakers fans. In L.A., he earned his first title, but things between Lakers management and Howard did not go over well, and he landed in Philly. So far, he has been a solid teammate and great vet in the locker room. His production on the court though has drawn some deserved criticism.

His points average is at the lowest of his career (5.9), and he does not even average a full block per game, playing almost 17 minutes a night. To back up Joel Embiid, who will need crucial rest in the playoffs, Howard must do more.

Despite averaging a decent 7.8 rebounds a game, Howard commits 3.1 fouls and 1.8 turnovers a game, again, under 17 minutes of playing time. In addition, his free throw shooting is atrocious, only making 51 percent whenever he is at the line.

Although he has been a good soldier since putting on a Sixers jersey, Howard could get moved before the trade deadline if Daryl Morey finds another center who can produce more points and be more consistent. While Joel Embiid rests, the Sixers need a steady presence in the middle to have future success. Howard knows this, so we can all only hope he turns his game around as this season continues