After blockbuster trade On February 10, when sending former Net James Harden to the Sixers to Ben Simmons, Philadelphia head coach Doc Rivers gave a speech about focusing on the present.
Tyrese Maxey, the Sixers’ sophomore point guard, listened attentively. He then adopted a “ready” mentality in the second half of the season.
“Coach Doc said something as soon as trading went down,” Maxey told The Post at the NBA All-Star weekend in Cleveland. “He said we have new faces and we have a chance, but we have limited time, so our focus has to be there through every round, every practice. , through every walk and every night that we walked into the court to play. ”
While activating Ruffles’ The Block and MTN DEW – a three-day fan interactive experience with NBA celebrities and athletes – Maxey raved about the team’s achievement just days when the 76ers had get Harden.
“The East this season has been very competitive and we have one goal and that is to be ready for playoff time, healthy, ready, chemistry on the right track and playing the best basketball we can. I can play to advance to the knockout round,” he said.
The 76ers also swapped sharp keeper Seth Curry, striker Andre Drummond and the first two picks for the Nets in the Harden-Simmons swap. Maxey was only a few months into the rookie season when Philadelphia got caught up in his story with Simmons.
Last June, the 76ers made constant headlines after being knocked out by the Hawks early in the playoffs in which Simmons had the worst offensive performance in history. After the second series, Simmons requested an exchange and severed ties with all teams together, raising questions about the culture and camaraderie in Philadelphia.
“I think the chemistry is extremely high and the morale of our team is very high,” said Maxey, a Kentucky product that Philadelphia picked for the 21st time in the 2020 NBA Draft.
“We have a great group of guys who really like each other, who get along, who want to play together and who want to win. When you have those things that I just mentioned, you have great camaraderie, great companionship and a team that wants to compete.”
Simmons, who skipped training camp last September, is yet to play a game this season. He had previously informed the 76ers that he was not mentally ready to compete – and he was still working with a therapist to get back on the field as early as last month, according to the report. ESPN.
Coach Nets Steve Nash said Last week, physical conditions delayed Simmons’ debut.
Harden, meanwhile, made his 76ers debut last Friday in a win over the Timberwolves. He had 27 points, 12 assists and eight rebounds after coming back from a hamstring problem – which the Nets say was the reason he missed his final games in Brooklyn.
Harden has joined a Philadelphia team entering their third All-Star break in the East, where they remain, just 2 1/2 games behind the Heat and Bulls.
Joel Embiid has kept the 76ers on their toes with a worthy MVP drive this season, averaging 29.6 points and 11.2 rebounds per game. After Philadelphia’s 125-109 Knicks win on Sunday night, the All-Star center described the new duo as “unstoppable. ”
Maxey went on to praise Embiid for setting a good example of leadership and communication – two things that Maxey says he personally has greatly improved on.
“I think last year, just as a rookie, without training camp and rotation in and out, I didn’t talk as much as I normally do on every team I’ve been on, no matter how old I was. I was,” Maxey said. “Now, perhaps one of the youngest on the team… if not the youngest in rotation, I feel very vocal. I can talk to every single one of my teammates… And like I said, the relationship off the pitch and the respect we have for each other, we can ask for the most from each other, and that’s what very special. ”
A special off-court relationship for Maxey is his friendship with Embiid.
“He feels so respected that he can criticize, help me, and push me to be the best I can be – and I think our entire team has that,” says Maxey. . “We can have difficult conversations with each other… and we can sit down and talk about it.”
After a straight win with Harden on the roster, the 76ers will host the Knicks on Wednesday.
https://nypost.com/2022/03/02/tyrese-maxey-talks-sixers-chemistry-after-james-harden-trade/ Tyrese Maxey on Sixers chemistry after dealing with James Harden