Philadelphia opened the preseason with a comfortable win over Melbourne United, 104-84… but it’s preseason, so who cares about the scores?
What matters is, how did the key players look?
Simmons was in playmaker mode against a team from his native country, dishing out 14 assists — preseason or not, the man is a fun-to-watch passing wizard. However, he had a couple of impressive buckets as well on his way to 8 points.
And even when things went wrong for him, he turned a blown self-alley-oop into a nice assist to Fultz.
Of course, what everyone wanted to see was how Fultz looked — and the early results were mixed, but it’s hard to take much away from this game. He had 14 points on 6-of-11 shooting, with four assists and a couple of blocked shots. Not that we learned much, Melbourne’s defense was not what one would describe as stout, so almost all his shots came right at the rim, the longest shot he took all night was from the elbow (and he made it). The most concerning thing is Fultz had a couple of clean looks at a three and decided not to take them. Still, this is a nice confidence booster for Fultz.
In case you needed a reminder, Embiid is very good at basketball — he had 20 points and 10 boards in 23 minutes. Melbourne does not face anything like him down under.