The return of Rodney Carney to the 76ers organization (More on that on Friday) means that Ed Stefanski’s signed player roster for the 2009-10 Sixers now stands at thirteen players. That number is two below the maximum of fifteen players allowed by the NBA and one below the number of fourteen that Stefanski has mentioned he will carry on the Sixers roster this season.
Stefanski has said in the past that in September during Sixers training camp at St. Joe’s University there will basically be a “tryout” for the final one or possibly two spots on the Sixers opening night roster.
With that in mind, we here at Philadunkia took the time to assemble a list of prospects and free agents we’d like to see invited to Sixers training camp in order to participate in the “tryout” process for the remaining opening or openings on the Sixers roster. Several of our suggestions may even be able to make positive contribution in this upcoming season.
Dionte Christmas (Undrafted FA — Temple) – We figured we’d get the obvious invitee out of the way at the jump. Christmas is a local kid who excelled at hitting the outside jumper (35.2% from three) during his All Atlantic 10 days at Temple. He showed some flashes of his potential as a member of the Sixers Orlando Pro Summer League team, including an 18 point effort vs. the Magic that came largely thanks to 4 of 6 shooting from behind the arc. Christmas caught on with the LAC for the NBA Summer League in LasVegas, but saw very limited run and thus he only averaged 2.6 points per game and hit only 1 of his 5 3-point attempts. He can be a bit streaky at times, but Christmas is 6-5 and 200 pounds with a pure stroke, so he provides two things the Sixers back-court could really use – a reliable outside shot and size. Thus he could be a nice role player off the bench for the Sixers. Yesterday, Stefanski extended an invite to Sixers camp to Christmas.
Cedric Bozeman (NBDL – Anaheim) – A 6-6 guard (pictured at left) who can handle like a point man and shoot the lights out is a rare find in today’s NBA, but that’s Bozeman’s game and he is wasting away in the NBDL. Bozeman’s versatility would fit in nicely with the Sixers rotation of Williams, Ivey, Holliday…oh yeah and Willie Green. Additionally the ability to shoot and handle the well would make Bozeman a very nice asset to have for Eddie Jordan’s Princeton offense. Bozeman averaged 19.4 ppg., shoots 53% from the field and almost 35% from behind the arc. Again a big guard who can shoot, just what the doctor ordered (Erving or Ramsay).
Othyus Jeffers (NBDL – Iowa) –At 6-5 he’s really a guard / forward, but we think he could handle playing the two-spot for the Sixers because he is very athletic and one thing is for sure, he can fill it up (21 ppg.). He shoots 53 % from the field. Jeffers does struggle from 3, only hitting at 28%, but that’s mostly due to the fact that he does not take many 3-balls. However his 9 rpg. will make for his lack of ability to bang down the three-pointer. This summer at the NBA Summer League, Jeffers played in two games for the D-League squad and averaged 20.5 ppg. and hit at a 52% clip from the field.
DeMarcus Nelson (Free Agent) – Nelson (pictured at left) got a shot to be the starting point guard for the GSW in 2008-09 and the experiment was met with mixed results. Then his time with the Warriors was unexpectedly over after 13 games. Nelson is natural scorer, not a point-man as is evidence by the fact that he holds the California state high school career scoring record. At 6-4, some may classify him as “small” for a two-guard, but that did not stop him from popping off for 39 points in a D-League game last year. In his 20 games down in the NBDL this season, he’s averaged 19.8 ppg. and hitting 38% of his 3’s. He was picked up by the Bulls late last season, but never saw court time. Nelson played for the Bulls in Las Vegas during the NBA Summer League, started all five games and averaged 13.8 ppg. and 3.8 rpg. and shot 48% from the field. Yet, the Bulls waived him on July 30th.
Jimmy Barron (Undrafted FA — Rhode Island) At 6-3 195, Barron is long and his career in the not-so-pretty Atlantic 10 proved he is not afraid to mix it up a little. As a senior at Rhody he threw in 17.4 ppg. and shot over 45% from 3-land. At the Portsmouth Invitational pre-draft camp Barron (19.3 ppg. at the PIT) set two tournament records. In the finals of the consolation bracket, Baron set the single game three point record by knocking down nine 3 pointers. Baron also broke the tournament record for total three pointers made with16 total (16-37 for 43.2%). He hooked on with the Wizards for the NBASL in Lave Vegas but did not see any tick.