Kennedy Chandler, Tennessee
The Sixers have plenty of familiarity with the Tennessee basketball program. Tobias Harris is a former Volunteer, and so was Josh Richardson. Last season, the Sixers happened to spend a first-round pick on a Tennessee guard, Jaden Springer. Could Philly keep the tradition alive?
Kennedy Chandler is generally projected in the top 20, but he could very well tumble into Philadelphia’s clutches at 23. Like Washington, he’s a guard the Sixers should strongly consider on talent and skill set alone — even if point guard isn’t inherently a “need” right now. Stepping into the void left by Springer’s absence, Chandler was electric in his lone season with the Volunteers. He hit 3s, flashed NBA speed attacking the rim, and was all over the place defensively.
Any 6-foot-1 guard will have natural limitations in the NBA. Chandler’s hustle and attention to detail may keep him on the floor defensively, but he’s never going to make the All-Defense team. Bigger guards and wings will target him on switches, and right now he’s positioned to lose the weight battle nine times out of ten (171 pounds).
That said, the offensive skill set is tantalizing (and reminiscent of another young Sixers guard… Tyrese Maxey). Chandler is not the same caliber of prospect Maxey was, but he does bear some resemblance. He’s a speedy ball-handler who doesn’t turn the ball over and who is quite good at attacking off the catch. He’s also a better 3-point shooter than Maxey was in college, hitting 40.5 percent of his catch-and-shoot attempts. Chandler would benefit from reps next to James Harden, where he’s not asked to run the offense and can instead focus on slicing apart the rotating defense.