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June 23, 2017

Sixers select pair of international players, trade other two picks in second round of NBA Draft

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After the Sixers' moved back into the first round for Latvian big man Anzejs Pasecniks without giving up any of their four 2017 second-round picks, it became only a matter of time before Bryan Colangelo fired his trade machine back up – the Sixers simply weren't going to have enough roster space.

That's why it's not a big surprise that the Sixers traded two second rounders, the 39th and 46th picks, and used the other two to draft a pair of international players who may not join the team right away. 

Here's a look at what they were able to do in the latter stages of Thursday night's NBA Draft:

36th-overall pick: PF Jonah Bolden, FMP Beograd (Serbia)


Bolden has a good physical profile for a modern day power forward, standing 6'10 with a reported 7'3 wingspan. He has somewhat of an unconventional build, with semi-wide hips, thin legs, and an upper body that has improved over the years but can still stand to be toned. He is nonetheless a fluid athlete who is quick off his feet and can play above the rim in space, sometimes impressively, especially when combined with his long arms.

A large part of Bolden's intrigue as a prospect, in addition to his length and fluidity, revolves around his shooting potential. Bolden has made noticeable strides as a perimeter shooter in his year in Serbia, hitting an impressive 40% of his 4.2 3-point attempts per game, but just 61% of his free throw attempts. He has very good mechanics when stepping into his shots in rhythm, catching and releasing in one fluid motion on the hop, while showing deep range and the ability to make shots off the bounce as well, sometimes after using sharp step-backs off isolation plays.  []


39th-overall pick: PG Jawun Evans, Oklahoma State

He's been traded. (We'll update this when we know what the Sixers got in return.)

46th-overall pick: SG Sterling Brown, SMU

Brown was also traded. (We'll update this one too.)

50th-overall pick: PF Mathias Lessort, Nanterre 92 (France)


From a physical standpoint, there's a lot to like about Lessort's profile. He has decent size at around 6'9, boasts a NBA ready frame (listed at 246 pounds), and possesses a solid 7'1 wingspan that allows him to play slightly bigger than his height. He's also a very good athlete, light on his feet, capable of sprinting the court with impressive speed, and being extremely nimble and agile with his movement, enabling him to cover ground on both ends of the floor exceptionally well. Lessort is also pretty explosive off two feet, being responsible for some highlight reel caliber finishes this season off pick and roll bounce passes or lobs, often through contact. 

Lessort is scoring at a pretty nice rate this season, averaging almost 18 points per-40, and has been very efficient doing so, converting 63.5% of his 2-point attempts. He gets most of his touches via the offensive glass, running the floor in transition, and finishing off pick and rolls and cuts. A very physical player, he draws quite a few fouls, but has only converted 56% of his free throw attempts. 

Not blessed with an extremely high skill-level, Lessort is a fairly limited offensive player overall, being more of an undersized center than a true 4/5. He is at his best executing simple moves and being spoon-fed by his guards, as his feel for the game is still work in progress. He doesn't have much of a back to the basket game, as his footwork is rudimentary and he lacks great touch on many of his short-range attempts, and he struggles to score from outside the paint, sporting a deep knee bend on his jumper that slows down his release significantly. He's also not a great passer, averaging two and a half times as many turnovers as assists on the year. []

More to come...

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