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Looks like Nerlens Noel will play for Sixers… in Summer League. Not before.

Apr 2, 2014, 1:48 PM EDT

Philadelphia 76ers v New York Knicks Getty Images

His tweet got people interested.

Then Nerlens Noel started working out with teammates and that got people wondering if he will play in a handful of games before the end of the season.

Probably not, reports Dei Lynam at CSNPhilly.com. The most likely debut is Summer League.

But Noel is starting to really impress at Sixers practices, Lynam adds.

“The first thing that I have fallen in love with is that he is beyond competitive,” (Sixers coach Brett) Brown said after Thursday’s practice. “There is a dog in him, a toughness in him that I misjudged…

“He is a fierce competitor and that is the number one quality for me that makes someone special,” Brown said. “Then you get into the athleticism. He has a bounce. People that can block a shot, hit the floor and go back up are special and he can do it with both his right hand and left hand.”

The plan all along was to keep him out all season, no matter how much he wanted to return.

The Sixers are going to have a couple high picks in this draft (theirs, very likely top three, plus the Pelicans’ first rounder, which is top five protected) and that is where the hope comes in. You can pair Michael Carter-Williams with Noel and a couple of lottery picks… that’s a lot of losses next season but a potentially very interesting young core. One that can mature and grow together.

That plan can’t be rushed. It’s going to take time, which means no Noel until the Summer League.

But that is going to be one intriguing Sixers Summer League squad.

  1. Professor Fate - Apr 2, 2014 at 2:41 PM

    It wouldn’t matter if Noel could step onto the court tomorrow for the Sixers because that would mess up “the plan” which is to lose the most games. Period.

    • barkley4life - Apr 2, 2014 at 3:09 PM

      and they still can’t catch Milwaukee who actually field decent players.

  2. aboogy123456 - Apr 2, 2014 at 3:55 PM

    If they draft well (big If) then they actually have the foundation for a championship team. I would be very excited if I were a sixers fan, they are in great shape. If I were them I would also splurge on a good veteran or two who can help mentor the young guys and improve the team in the next couple years.

    • WillIEverSeeACupInMyLife? - Apr 2, 2014 at 6:04 PM

      How can you not “draft well” in this draft?

      • sasquash20 - Apr 2, 2014 at 7:53 PM

        Its the Sixers. They can mess it up. E.Turner over D.Cousins ring a bell. That mistake lead to the Bynum trade. And that is why we stink now

      • misremembered72 - Apr 3, 2014 at 10:41 AM

        As a sixers fan I don’t want that bum demarcus. he’ll never be a winner, his attitude makes him a cancer to the team.

        You can say ET was a bust but that was a weak draft to begin with. The players drafted immediately after ET haven’t faired very well either.

  3. pbtunpaidwriter - Apr 2, 2014 at 3:57 PM

    I still have a tough time believing Noel playing would actually thwart their tanking effort.

    He should play this year and get some confidence if he’s 100%.

  4. bevan18 - Apr 2, 2014 at 4:08 PM

    Cant see Noel being starting material for several years. Way too light to play center, no offensive game (the phrase “reconstructing his shot” doesnt give immediate hope).
    I think he’ll be a great shotblocker one day but even saying hes the next Camby is a big reach.

    • sasquash20 - Apr 2, 2014 at 7:54 PM

      Def needs to fill out but he will be a very solid 4/5 one day

  5. charlutes - Apr 2, 2014 at 4:24 PM

    So Pop gets fined a quarter of a mil for resting his vets but the sixers are applauded for sitting a guy the fans want to see all season to help them tank. F off everyone on earth except Tim Duncan and G pop and F you.

    • ranfan12 - Apr 2, 2014 at 9:38 PM

      You aren’t talking about that time someone forgot to notify the office are you? If so, that’s the spurs fault they got fined. It wasn’t that hard to make a generic excuse.

    • sixerstrong - Apr 3, 2014 at 9:22 AM

      What a joke. Someone has a short memory. David Robinson in 1997?

  6. ohioteamsusuallysuck - Apr 2, 2014 at 5:36 PM

    I wish cavs would have taken him number 1 and let him sit all year and get 1 more very high pick in this draft. Instead they got Anthony Bennett, Jarrett jack, Luol deng, Andrew Bynum, spencer hawes to try to make playoffs. They could have had kyrie, waiters, wiggins or Parker, Thompson and Noel as starting 5 next year along with whoever they get as free agent. That core would have been a dynasty

  7. 00maltliquor - Apr 2, 2014 at 5:45 PM

    I can’t wait to see this kid play in the NBA. I am intrigued by his potential.

  8. JMClarkent - Apr 2, 2014 at 6:54 PM

    He looks like he has hit the gym a bit (which was needed).

  9. JMClarkent - Apr 2, 2014 at 6:54 PM

    He looks like he has hit the gym a bit (which was needed).

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