Shake and James post game

The Blue Coats entered Tuesday’s game riding a 6 game win streak. During their previous matchup with the Greensboro Swarm, Marial Shayok put up 42 points in a 141-135 victory featuring significant offensive firepower. Could history repeat itself? The answer was an emphatic yes. Here are my top takeaways from the Blue Coats 139-124 victory over the Swarm from last night.

Tuesday night was an explosion of offense from the Delaware Blue Coats. Here are some fun facts from last night’s incredibly impressive victory vs the Swarm

  • The lowest amount of points scored from the Coats in a quarter was 33
  • The Blue Coats had a ridiculous efficiency field goal percentage of 64.4%
  • They shot 20-39 from 3 point range, good for 51.3%
  • The Coats only missed one free throw (19-20)
  • 36 of the Blue Coats’ 46 field goals were assisted, very impressive
  • 139 points was the second highest scoring output of the season (152 points on 11/15/19)

Zhaire Smith

The majority of Zhaire’s role on offense continues to include cutting to the basket and moving without the ball. While the majority of his offensive numbers have increased compared to last season, Zhaire is still 4th or 5th option on the Blue Coats. For better or worse, Zhaire averages the 6th most amount of points (12.8) and takes the 6th most field goal attempts per game on the Blue Coats (10.2).

It was a tale of two halves for Zhaire Smith vs the Swarm. Other than some very good defense and an alley oop toss from Marial Shayok in the second quarter, Zhaire Smith was fairly invisible on offense. Zhaire had 4 points and two turnovers in 9 minutes in the first half.

The second half was really when Zhaire got it rolling on offense. After a three pointer in the corner at the start of the third quarter, Zhaire rolled off 7 points in the 3rd quarter. His highlight of the night came on a chase down chase down block, followed by a layup on the other end, in the 4th quarter.

Zhaire Smith requires patience…

The truth for Sixers fans is Zhaire Smith requires patience. He’s simply not yet ready for playing time with the Philadelphia 76ers. That doesn’t mean Zhaire doesn’t show promise. The talent is all there.

I expect Zhaire Smith to spend the majority of his time with the Delaware Blue Coats this season, honing his shooting and on ball defense. If Zhaire pans out, he could be an incredible running mate with Matisse Thybulle playing 10-15 minutes per game with the Sixers in 2020.

Here are Zhaire Smith’s highlights vs the Greensboro Swarm

Marial Shayok

Marial Shayok continues to show everything you want to see with the Delaware Blue Coats. His ability to roll off screens, hit the open jumper and pull up from three has been excellent. Shayok is shooting 35.4% from 3 this season on 6.5 attempts per game. He’s averaging 24.7 points in 29.1 minutes per game, which is tied for second best in the entire G League.

Where does Shayok need to show progress? His defense. Marial Shayok’s 115 defense rating is the biggest hurdle to Shayok getting playing time with the Philadelphia 76ers. While his net rating is good (6.2), Shayok is a high volume shooter that simply will not play the same role with the Sixers.

Where does a high volume scorer fit on the Sixers?

Marial Shayok had a very efficient game vs the Greensboro Swarm on Tuesday night. Shayok went 2-2 for 4 points in his first 3 minutes, 11 points in 12 minutes in the first half (5-6 from the field) and finished with 16 points in 21 minutes. Shayok continues to show tons of promise for a second round pick but faces an uphill battle.

Matisse Thybulle is thriving with the Sixers right now and plays a role that Brett Brown seems to prefer: blocks, steals and deflections. That doesn’t bode well for Marial Shayok as that isn’t exactly his style of play.

I would love to see Marial Shayok continue to develop his defense with the Blue Coats this season and get some end of the regular season playing time with the Sixers. The Sixers are simply too deep in their rotations for Shayok to make the jump right now.

Here are Marial Shayok’s highlights vs the Greensboro Swarm

Christ Koumadje

Christ Koumadje was the current backup center for Doral Moore Jr last night and is making a huge impact protecting the rim and making teams second guess shots in the paint. First things first, Connor Johnson and the rest of the Blue Coats player development coaches require significant praise. Christ Koumadje had been averaging nearly 20 & 10 over his last 3 games and had yet another standout performance vs the Greensboro Swarm.

Just as he showed at Florida State University, Christ Koumadje is an extremely efficient player when he’s on the court. Koumadje had a blocked shot and 2 boards in 4 minutes while additionally causing multiple missed shots in the paint on defense. Koumadje’s presence was significantly felt when the Blue Coats went on that huge run in the first quarter.

If there is one player to see up close at the 76ers Fieldhouse, it is Christ Koumadje…

Christ Koumadje finished the game with 7 points, 15 boards and 5 blocks in 31 minutes. Koumadje has been the Blue Coats best defender this season (100.6 defensive rating) and features a ridiculous net rating of 19.7, which is by far the best on the team. Despite his large frame, Koumadje’s footwork and quick feet are what is most impressive about Koumadje as a prospect.

Koumadje has really excelled with Shake Milton in the pick and roll over the last handful of games. Shake and Koumadje have formed into a very impressive duo off the bench that has been a major part of the Blue Coats’ recent success. If there is one player you have to see up close at the 76ers Fieldhouse, it is Christ Koumadje.

Shake Milton

Despite having a standout season last year in the G League, Shake Milton has been coming off the bench for the Delaware Blue Coats. However, that doesn’t mean he hasn’t been just as efficient. In four games so far, Shake Milton is averaging 17.8 points in 22.8 minutes per game while shooting 50% from 3 on 4.5 attempts per game.

Shake Milton was on fire last night…

In addition to providing solid offense, Shake Milton has been one of the best defenders on the Blue Coats. It’s only been 4 games, but he boasts a 90.8 defensive rating that has surely caught Brett Brown’s attention. Last night was a great example of Shake’s impact with the Blue Coats where facilitated the offense very well.  In fact, Shake only had two field goal attempts in the first quarter.

Shake Milton was simply on fire after the first quarter. He had 13 points in 14 minutes in the first half and erupted for 10 points in the 3rd quarter. At one point in the 3rd quarter he had shot 8-11 from the field and 4-6 from 3. Shake Milton finished with a team high 32 points on 10-16 from the field and 6-9 from 3.

Here are Shake Milton’s highlights vs the Greensboro Swarm

The Delaware Blue Coats take on the Stockton Kings on December 19th @ 3:30pm at the 76ers Fieldhouse. For everything Blue Coats and player development, be sure to follow us on Twitter @BlueRouteTPL. Thanks for reading!