Blue Coats select Jones, Key in G League Draft

The Delaware Blue Coats, the NBA G League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, selected Jemerrio Jones (No. 18 overall) and Braxton Key (No. 25 overall) in Monday’s 2021 NBA G League Draft.

Jones, one of just nine selections in this year’s draft to have previously spent time on an NBA roster, was named to the 2019-20 All-NBA G League Third Team last season as a member of the Wisconsin Herd. In 42 games (40 starts) with the Herd, the 6-5 Jones averaged 10.8 points, 12.0 rebounds, 4.6 assists, 1.3 steals and 0.9 blocks in 30.4 minutes per game. He led the G League in total rebounds (504) and finished the season as the only player in the league with 500-plus rebounds and 150-plus assists.

Jones began his professional career with the South Bay Lakers during the 2018-19 G League season. He was called up to the Los Angeles Lakers on March 31, 2019. In six games (two starts) with the L.A. Lakers, Jones posted 4.5 points, 8.2 rebounds, 2.2 assists, 1.2 steals and 0.8 blocks in 23.8 minutes per contest. The Memphis native recorded at least 10 rebounds in three of his six career NBA games. As a collegian, Jones was the 2018 Western Athletic Conference (WAC) Player of the Year at New Mexico State.

Key played his final two collegiate seasons at Virginia, where he helped the Cavaliers to the 2019 NCAA Championship. He scored six points and recorded a season-high-tying 10 rebounds in the 85-77 overtime win over Texas Tech on April 8, 2019. In 27 games (25 starts) as a senior last season, Key averaged 9.9 points, a team-high 7.4 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.2 steals in 33.6 minutes per game. The 6-8 Key began his college career with two seasons at Alabama, where he was selected to the 2017 SEC All-Freshman team.

Zhaire Smih scores G League career-high 24 points in Blue Coats’ loss

The Delaware Blue Coats (21-21), the NBA G League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, fell to the Lakeland Magic (24-17), 129-116, on Sunday afternoon at 76ers Fieldhouse. Zhaire Smith, on assignment from the 76ers, posted a G League career-high 24 points (10-12 fg, 2-3 3fg, 1-2 ft) with two rebounds and two assists in 34 minutes for the Blue Coats.

Jared Brownridge scored 19 of his team-high 27 points (9-17 fg, 7-13 3fg, 1-1 ft) in the first half for Delaware. Today’s performance was Brownridge’s fourth game of the season–and his 10th overall dating back to last season–with seven 3-point field goals made.

76ers two-way contract player Marial Shayok tallied 26 points (11-21 fg, 3-7 3fg, 1-1 ft), eight rebounds and a season-high-tying seven assists in a team-high 37 minutes for the Blue Coats.

The Blue Coats trailed 65-63 at halftime, and were outscored 30-19 in the third quarter. Lakeland began the second half with an 11-0 run. The visitors converted 17 of their 20 free-throw attempts (.850) in the contest.

Lakeland’s Josh Magette posted a career-high 38 points (10-18 fg, 7-13 3fg, 7-7 ft) in a double-double performance that also included 11 assists in 36 minutes of action. Philadelphia native Amile Jefferson notched his sixth consecutive double-double with 31 points (11-18 fg, 7-8 ft) and 16 rebounds in 37 minutes for the Magic. Hassani Gravett (14 points) was a game-high plus-23 in a game-high 38 minutes.

The Blue Coats return to action on Wednesday at 11 a.m. against the Maine Red Claws at 76ers Fieldhouse.

Blue Coats acquire Hakim Warrick, two others

The Delaware Blue Coats, the NBA G League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, announced today that the team has acquired the returning player rights to Michael Frazier, Xavier Johnson and Hakim Warrick in three separate transactions.

The Blue Coats acquired the returning player rights to Frazier from the Rio Grande Valley Vipers in exchange for the returning player rights to Cameron Oliver. Delaware acquired the returning player rights to Johnson from the Texas Legends in exchange for the returning player rights to Cory Jefferson, while also acquiring the returning player rights to Warrick from the Iowa Wolves in exchange for the returning player rights to Andrew Andrews.

Frazier (6-4, 200) has appeared in eight NBA games with the Houston Rockets and 14 G League games (all starts) with Rio Grande Valley this season while on a two-way contract with Houston. The 25-year-old averaged 16.6 points, 3.3 rebounds and 2.4 assists in 28.7 minutes per game with Rio Grande Valley. In 45 games (39 starts) with the Vipers last season, Frazier averaged 16.9 points, 5.5 rebounds and 3.4 assists in 33.3 minutes per game and earned the 2019 NBA G League Most Improved Player award. Frazier played his college basketball at the University of Florida (2012-15), where he set a school record for three-point field goals made in a single season with 118 triples as a sophomore.

Oliver originally joined the Blue Coats in a Jan. 26, 2018 trade with Wisconsin and appeared in 44 total games with Delaware. He averaged 13.2 points, 8.5 rebounds and 1.7 blocks in 25.8 minutes per game.

Johnson (6-7, 225) played in 73 games (27 starts) with Texas from 2017-19, averaging 7.1 points, 5.6 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 20.4 minutes per game. In 17 games (all starts) with BC Rilski Sportist in Bulgaria during the current 2019-20 season, the 26-year-old holds averages of 16.9 points, 8.1 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 29.6 minutes per game. Johnson played collegiately at the University of Colorado Boulder from 2012-17, appearing in 127 career games and finishing his career in 11th place on the school’s all-time scoring list with 1,463 points.

The Blue Coats originally acquired the returning player rights to Jefferson from Texas in a three-team trade on Oct. 16, 2018. Jefferson appeared in 22 total games with Delaware last season and averaged 9.2 points and 5.1 rebounds in 24.0 minutes per game.

Warrick (6-9, 219) saw action in 44 games (19 starts) with Iowa during the 2018-19 G League season, averaging 12.0 points, 5.8 rebounds and 1.9 assists in 20.7 minutes per game. The Philadelphia native was selected by the Blue Coats with the No. 9 overall selection in the 2018 NBA G League Draft before being traded to Iowa, along with the returning player rights to James Webb III, in exchange for Michael Bryson. Warrick, 37, was selected by the Memphis Grizzlies with the No. 19 overall selection in the 2005 NBA Draft and played eight NBA seasons with Memphis, Milwaukee, Chicago, Phoenix, New Orleans and Charlotte. In 526 career NBA contests (109 starts), he averaged 9.4 points and 4.0 rebounds in 20.2 minutes per contest.

Andrews appeared in four games with Delaware during the 2017-18 season.

Mumford scores 34 points, Shayok adds 26 in Blue Coats’ victory

The Delaware Blue Coats (16-11), the NBA G League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, defeated the Erie BayHawks (9-19), 134-103, in front of a sellout crowd on Saturday night at 76ers Fieldhouse. In the second game of a home back-to-back for the Blue Coats, the team posted season-high totals for 3-point field goals (22) and rebounds (63). Delaware totaled 134 points for the second-consecutive contest and outscored its opponents by a combined 70 points in the pair of victories this weekend.

Xavier Munford led all scorers with 34 points (13-19 fg, 8-10 3fg), while tallying seven rebounds and four assists in 27 minutes for the Blue Coats. Eight 3-point field goals tied a G League career-high total for Munford.

76ers two-way contract player Marial Shayok posted 26 points (12-24 fg, 2-7 3fg), seven rebounds, five assists and season-high four steals in 33 minutes for the home team. Haywood Highsmith (15 points, 11 rebounds, three steals) and Christ Koumadje (12 points, 16 rebounds, two blocks) each added a double-double for the Blue Coats in the win.

The Blue Coats held a six point edge entering the fourth quarter, but they bested the BayHawks 40-15 in the final frame. Delaware held a 63-40 rebounding advantage, in addition to outscoring the visitors 58-38 in the paint. 63 rebounds is one shy of the Delaware franchise record, and the team improves to 7-0 this season when corralling 55 rebounds or more.

New Orleans Pelicans two-way contract player Josh Gray paced Erie’s attack with 24 points (9-18 fg, 2-4 3fg, 2-3 ft), seven rebounds and three assists in 36 minutes of work. Jalen Adams came off the Erie bench to score 18 points (6-8 fg, 4-6 3fg, 1-1 ft) in addition to seven rebounds and three assists in 34 minutes. Scottie Lindsey added 15 points (6-13 fg, 2-7 3fg, 1-1 ft), six rebounds and two steals in 32 minutes for the BayHawks.

The Blue Coats hit the road to take on the Canton Charge on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. ET. The team then travels to Erie for a 7 p.m. tip-off on Saturday, Feb. 1 before returning home to 76ers Fieldhouse on Wednesday, Feb. 5 at 7 p.m. against the Windy City Bulls.

Highsmith on Jonah Bolden: ‘He can do a lot of things’

Because of the depth the Philadelphia 76ers have in the front-court, there probably won’t be a lot of minutes available for 76ers F Jonah Bolden. However, fortunately for Bolden, he can continue to develop with the 76ers’ G League team, the Delaware Blue Coats.

Recently, Bolden was sent down to the Blue Coats to get some playing time, and he has produced. On Friday against Long Island, Bolden dropped 34 points and 9 rebounds, and on Saturday, the 23-year-old Bolden had another strong game when he scored 16 points and grabbed 16 rebounds against Canton.

“He’s very versatile,” Blue Coats’ Haywood Highsmith said about Bolden after their 123-111 loss to Canton on Saturday. “He can do a lot of things: pass, score, shoot, so he’s just a great all-around player.”

Last season, Bolden averaged 4.7 ppg and 3.8 rpg in 44 games with the 76ers. The second-year player has a decent stroke and shot 35% from downtown last season.

This season, Bolden came into the 2019-20 NBA season looking noticeably different. Bolden’s body looks different and he appears to have worked hard to improve his game in the offseason. One thing that he showed is the ability to put the ball on the floor. Last season, he did a lot of his scoring in spot-up situations but watching him in Delaware, he made an effort to do more things off the dribble. 

Bolden is still a young player, but barring injuries to Al Horford or Joel Embiid, will not have much of a role with the 76ers this season. But, hopefully, for him, he can continue to work on his game and continue to grow as a player.


Blue Coats’ Shayok drops 34 points on Saturday night

The Delaware Blue Coats (0-1), the NBA G League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, fell to the Maine Red Claws (1-0), 148-125, on Saturday night in the season opener at 76ers Fieldhouse. In front of a sellout crowd, 76ers two-way contract player Marial Shayok posted a game-high 34 points (14-24 fg, 3-7 3fg, 2-3 ft) with six rebounds and three assists in 29 minutes.

Xavier Munford poured in 25 of his 29 points (8-16 fg, 3-4 3fg, 4-4 ft) in the second half for the Blue Coats, adding six rebounds and three assists in 29 minutes of action. Zhaire Smith, on assignment from the 76ers, tallied 14 points (5-12 fg, 1-5 3fg, 2-2 ft), five rebounds and two assists in 30 minutes. Christ Koumadje added 10 points (3-5 fg, 2-2 ft), five rebounds and four blocks in 22 minutes as a starter.

Boston Celtics two-way contract player Tremont Waters paced Maine with a team-high 28 points (9-18 fg, 7-11 3fg, 2-3 ft), four rebounds and three assists in 27 minutes. Romeo Langford, on assignment from the Celtics, posted 27 points (10-15 fg, 2-6 3fg, 3-4 ft), five rebounds and a game-high six blocks in 32 minutes for the Red Claws. Yante Maten totaled 24 points (7-12 fg, 2-3 3fg, 4-4 ft) and five rebounds in 20 minutes as a starter, while Boston Celtics two-way player Tacko Fall posted a double-double with 13 points (6-9 fg, 1-2 ft) and 11 rebounds to go along with three blocked shots in 25 minutes as a reserve.

The Blue Coats return to action on Monday night at home when they take on the Greensboro Swarm at 7:00 p.m.

76ers’ Justin Patton: ‘I bring an edge to the game, length, versatility'(VIDEO)

When the 76ers acquired Jimmy Butler from the Timberwolves, many people were unsure about the second player that came over in the deal. That second player was Justin Patton. The second-year center was the 16th pick out of Creighton by Chicago(pick traded to Minnesota in Jimmy Butler trade) in the 2017 NBA Draft.

Patton had a tough first year in the NBA. He broke his left foot and would spend most of the season in the G League playing for the Iowa Wolves. In September 2018, Patton had a another surgery, this time to repair a broken right foot, but now he is back on the court. The 7-foot Patton made his debut last week with the Delaware Blue Coats, who is the 76ers’ G League affiliate, and in five games with Delaware, Patton is averaging 10.2 points, 6.6 rebounds, and 2.6 blocks. While playing most of his first season in Iowa was tough for Patton, he believes it made him a better person.

“It was really difficult. It was just me finding my way,” Patton told about his first season in the NBA. “I didn’t really have a lot of guidance. I had a couple of guys: Jamal Crawford, Jeff Teague, Taj Gibson those guys helped me out a little bit, but I was stuck down in Iowa for so long, so I didn’t really have the correct guidance every step of the way. So, it was a little bit of trial and error, and I learned… I’m probably a way better man than I would be if I went through the path of least resistance.”

The 21-year-old Patton does have decent skills, which he feels can help the 76ers.

“I just bring an edge to the game, length, versatility. and just being able to guard different types of ball-screens, and also being long,” Patton said. “That’s what the Sixers like to do. Now, we probably got the most length in the league, and me being on the team is going to add another factor to that, and also just another 7-footer who can launch threes.”

Patton expects to be called up by the 76ers sometime after the All-Star break. However, due to the recent addition of center Boban Marjanovic, who came over from the Clippers in the deal for Tobias Harris, Patton probably won’t get much time this season for the 76ers. Before he was dealt to the 76ers, Minnesota declined Patton’s third-year option, so he will be an unrestricted free agent this summer.

Listen to our complete interview with Patton as he discussed his return from injury, his game, and how he will help the 76ers when he joins the team:

Heat two-way player Duncan Robinson continues to dominate the G League

Miami Heat two-way player Duncan Robinson is making his mark in the G League. The 24-year-old Robinson is the second-leading scorer for the Sioux Falls Skyforce(20.0 ppg), including shooting 48% from downtown. Also, he leads the G League in three-pointers made, which is remarkable considering that Robinson has not played a full season in the G League as he was with Miami earlier in the season.

Back in December, Robinson shooting prowess was on full display when he made 10 three-pointers and finished with a career-high 32 points against the Clippers’ G League affiliate. On Friday, in Delaware at the beautiful, brand new 76ers Fieldhouse, Robinson scored 23 points, including 3-5 from downtown, which helped the Skyforce defeat the Delaware Blue Coats 134-123.

The goal for any G League player is to be a full-time NBA player, and according to the 6’8 forward, to be a fixture in the NBA, he must stay aggressive.

“Knowing what I do well,” Robinson said when discussing what he needs to do to be successful in the NBA. “Keep being aggressive on the offensive end, and competing on defense.”

In today’s NBA where the three-point shot is a huge weapon, Robinson definitely has the skills to have a role with an NBA team.

We caught up with Robinson after Sioux Falls’ victory over Delaware on Friday night. He discussed the life of a two-way player, learning from Dwyane Wade, and more.

Listen below: