The Philadelphia 76ers struggled to create turnovers after the Jimmy Butler trade. Robert Covington was known as a 3 and D player for the team. When thinking of a defender in the NBA most people would think about one-on-one guarding of your man. Covington was a disruptive presence on that end of the floor primarily for his ability to get his hands in passing lanes and create deflections and turnovers.

It Feels like I belong – Matisse Thybulle

In June’s draft, the 76ers traded up to acquire Matisse Thybulle. A 6’5″ wing defender who had remarkable defensive metrics at the University of Washington. His combined STOCKS (steals and blocks) of 5.8 are absolutely eye popping. To further underscore just how much of a defensive weapon Thybulle is, he averaged more steals than rebounds and more blocks than assists. 

Off Ball

The Sixers seemed to have him defending the wing off ball in the Blue/White scrimmage Saturday. His ability to survey the court from the baseline while guarding the corner three and baseline drives allows him to see plays develop. It seems as though the Sixers trust him enough to gamble a bit, and the early results were dramatic. In the first half Thybulle got his hands on at least six balls and converted three steals and a block. There were times where it felt he was single-handedly keeping the white squad in the game. 

When speaking about Thybulle in training camp, head coach Brett Brown said, “He can cover up a mistake as much as any young kid I have coached.”