After posting a 3-1 record over their first four games of this brutal stretch, the Sixers head out west for four games. While the team is traveling, two of their injured players will begin the next steps in their rehab. The team announced that Zhaire Smith and Justin Patton have been assigned to the Delaware Blue Coats.
Smith, acquired on draft night in a trade with the Suns, suffered a Jones fracture during an offseason camp. In addition, the former Texas Tech product had a bad allergic reaction to sesame, which set back his rehab due to weight loss and other factors. Per the Sixers official press release, Smith will begin by participating in the non-contact elements of Blue Coats practices. Still, it’s progress.
Back in November, head coach Brett Brown said the G League is where Smith is likely to spend a lot of his time, even when he gets healthy this season.
“My expectation at some point will be to integrate him a lot with the G League and let him practice, let him play and let him grow in that environment instead of being stuck as a prisoner in this NBA thing where he won’t practice much nor will he play.”
Smith averaged 11.3 points and 5.0 rebounds in his only college season before getting drafted.
Patton, who came over from Minnesota in the Jimmy Butler trade, is recovering from right foot surgery. He will begin practicing with the Blue Coats with limited and controlled contact. Patton was the 17th overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft out of Creighton.