76ers select Springer in first round of NBA Draft, grab two bigs in Round 2

Before the 2021 NBA Draft, it was rumored that the Philadelphia 76ers could move star guard Ben Simmons, but nothing ever materialized, and Simmons is still a Sixer for now. 

Philadelphia kept their draft picks and added guard Jaden Springer (No. 28) from the University of Tennessee, F/C Filip Petrušev (No. 50) of Serbia, and another big in Charles Bassey (No. 53) from Western Kentucky University.    

Springer, 18, led the Volunteers in scoring as a freshman at 12.5 points per game while also pacing the team in three-point percentage at 43%.

In 25 games during his lone collegiate season, the 6-4 guard was an SEC All-Freshman Team selection posted a team-best six games of at least 20 points per contest.

Interestingly enough, Springer’s father, Gary, was selected by the 76ers in the 1984 NBA Draft. In addition, he is the cousin of current NBA player DeAndre’ Bembry, 

Springer is a young player who can get to the basket. He is a decent shooter and defender. Springer is more of a combo-guard at this stage of his development. He might not give the Sixers much this season. However, he can be a decent prospect over time.

The 21-year-old Petrušev(6-11) was the 2019-20 West Coast Conference Player of the Year and spent two seasons playing collegiately at Gonzaga before heading overseas to play in Serbia’s Adriatic League for the 2020-21 season.

During his final year with the Bulldogs, he averaged 17.5 points and 7.9 rebounds while shooting .562 from the floor. This past season, he appeared in 21 games for KK Mega Basket, averaging 23.7 points, which was the highest average in the Adriatic League in 14 years, while also hauling in 7.6 rebounds per contest.

During his lone season competing professionally in his home country of Serbia, he shot .580 from the field and .419 from three-point range. 

Petrušev is not the most athletic player, but he has decent range on his shot. Many believe he has the potential to be a decent backup center on the NBA level.

Bassey, 20, played three collegiate seasons at Western Kentucky University, averaging a double-double with 15.9 points and 10.5 rebounds over 72 career games as a Hilltopper.

As a junior this past season, he tallied 18 double-doubles, the second-most in Division I. Following the 2020-21 season, the 6-11 center was named the Conference USA Player of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year.

Bassey can block shots(3.1 per game last season) and is a decent athlete who can score in the post. He could contribute defensively for Philadelphia this season.