4 players with most to prove during training camp for the 76ers
2. PJ Tucker
Just to get this out of the way, PJ Tucker is a surefire rotation player who should continue soaking up minutes for Philadelphia this season. The question mark for him, however, is if he has enough left in the tank to warrant a prominent role with the team boasting more optionality at his position compared to the previous campaign aside from his stature as the team’s voice of reason amid the outside noise.
Despite being at the advanced age of 38, Tucker bears no stylings of a man who should be enjoying cruises moving forward. After all, he did start in all games for the team last season and was heavily banked on as the team’s go-to defender against high-octane scorers. Clearly, durability and availability won’t be an issue.
However, the veteran bruiser is strictly a defender at this juncture with only a cameo presence on offense at most. Of course, shoehorning defensive-minded players like Tucker is a non-negotiable in balancing a rotation hoarded by offensive types, but Nick Nurse, who has always preferred players who can do multiple things on both ends, may eventually find him to be too one-dimensional to tether to a major hat.
Tucker could still be the starter to kick things off, but this training camp will be crucial for him to showcase more of a package on both ends, similar to what he showed in his previous stop in Miami. If not, he’ll be one of the easiest cogs to demote to second-unit duty.