Lack of deep bench worries Sixers' Collins

Posted: December 22, 2011

The 76ers have run out of preseason games, are running out of practices, and they still have some important questions that remain unanswered.

Following an afternoon practice at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine on Wednesday, coach Doug Collins again contemplated his rotation. He feels pretty good about his starters and second-unit fixtures Thaddeus Young, Lou Williams, and Evan Turner.

But after that it gets a little sketchy. He's got a group of guys - a mix of young and inexperienced guys and some seasoned veterans - that he's going to have to turn to who will need to be ready when he calls on them, no questions asked.

Forward Andres Nocioni didn't see the floor in the Sixers' two preseason wins over the Washington Wizards, but Collins has confidence that if he turns to the 6-foot-7 veteran, he'll be ready.

"He'll probably be our sixth perimeter guy," Collins said. "I have a good rotation with our five perimeter guys, so that sixth guy is going to have to be ready. That guy almost has to be like [center] Tony Battie, where he might get 10 minutes one night, and then I might not need him for a couple. He's got to stay ready and prepared."

The Sixers acquired Nocioni, 32, along with center Spencer Hawes from Sacramento in June 2010 in exchange for center Samuel Dalembert. In 54 games with the Sixers last season, Nocioni made 17 starts, averaging 6.1 points and 3.1 rebounds in slightly more than 17 minutes.

A member of Argentina's 2004 Olympic championship team, Nocioni, who played internationally over the summer, said he was ready to play despite not seeing any action in the preseason.

"I don't know my role right now, but I'm going to wait my time," Nocioni said. "I need to stay in shape and be ready. Right now I'm just staying ready. I'm going to wait for my time."


Contact staff writer John N. Mitchell at jmitchell@philly.com or @deepsixer3 on Twitter.

 

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