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Kyle O'Quinn is the Perfect Backup Center for the 76ers

By Matt Gregan, Sports Talk Philly Editor

Kyle O'Quinn, who was signed by the Philadelphia 76ers to a contract for the veteran minimum, provides some things that can't be replaced. 

As a seven-year veteran of the NBA, O'Quinn has seen it all and played in about every role imaginable. He provides versatility and experience to the 76ers' young bench unit. 

"I think I've played every role in the NBA over my seven years. I've had the luxury of starting and I've had the luxury of being the 15th guy," O'Quinn said in Friday's introductory press conference.

He has started at times throughout his career, totaling 63 starts between the Orlando Magic (41 starts), New York Knicks (19 starts) and Indiana Pacers (three starts). He averaged 9.2 points and 6.7 rebounds per game in 22.9 minutes per game as a starter. 

O'Quinn also has a lot of experience playing in different roles coming off the bench, whether it be as one of the first guys off the bench or, as he put it, the 15th man. That versatility and experience playing different roles in the NBA throughout this career will be beneficial during his time in Philadelphia. 

The 76ers have an elite starting center, Joel Embiid, and have acquired veteran big man Al Horford, who will start at power forward but also be the team's main backup center.

"The work doesn't go unnoticed and I'm always ready for any opportunity. I think that was the main thing that coach Brown and Elton [Brand] wanted to get across to me," O'Quinn said. "Whatever opportunity presents itself, I will fill those shoes and I speak confidently when I say that." 

The minutes won't always be there for O'Quinn, who will on most nights be the third option at center. However, there will be nights when the 76ers will need O'Quinn to play significant minutes (Embiid sitting out part of back-to-backs?) and it was important to have a guy who has the ability, experience and versatility to be able to produce and step up whenever needed. 

O'Quinn is the perfect backup center for the 76ers because they were looking for someone who will embrace a smaller role while still being able to produce whenever needed, and he is that guy. 


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