At this point, it's comical to believe that some players will actually be cut from the Philadelphia 76ers. However, the Sixers brought 20 players to camp, so cuts will be made and Philly still has a D-League team to fill in Delaware. The 87ers finished their inaugural season 12-38, but had interesting talent. One of those interesting players was Thanasis Antetokounmpo -- brother of Bucks forward Giannis and a draft pick of New York Knicks in 2014. The 87ers will be looking for another impact player like Thanasis and might find one on the 76ers current training camp roster.
That man could be Jakarr Sampson, an undrafted rookie free agent out of St. John's. Sampson left St. John's after two seasons, averaging 12.8 points and 6.1 boards last season. Sure, some might criticize him for coming out early and then going undrafted, but wouldn't you have left college early if you could? The 76ers signed Sampson to a partially-guaranteed three-year deal, which means he was brought in as a training camp body.
76ers sign JaKarr Sampson to partially guaranteed contract http://t.co/JfaZ3jkjUT— Kurt Helin (@basketballtalk) September 16, 2014
The 6'8" forward doesn't have much of a jump shot (20 percent from three last year), but is heralded for being an athletic freak. Even though he doesn't stretch the floor, Sampson is aware of this and only took 0.2 shots from three per game. He likes to stay around the rim and hit from mid-range; there's no Josh Smith syndrome in this forward. However, with the NBA becoming bubbly eyed with shots from three and attacking the rim, Sampson will need to hone his game in Delaware before the 76ers is a realistic option.
Although Sampson went undrafted, he went to the same high school as LeBron James -- St. Vincent-St. Mary -- where he was a top-100 player.
Sampson is a prototypical wing that looks to bang on the boards, attack the rim, and play solid defense. Sampson only turned the ball over 1.6 times per game last season, which may be his best offensive attribute. The athletic wing blocked a shot per game last season, which may not be jaw dropping, but it's something that opposing offensives have to account for. His 7"0 wingspan sets him up to be a capable NBA defender, something that many shooting deficient forwards have pegged their NBA lifelines on.
So, in reality, Sampson just doesn't have the tools to be in the NBA right now. Although the 76ers aren't constructed as a typical NBA team would be, coach Brett Brown is already comparing forward Ronald Roberts Jr. to Kenneth Faried, so Sampson is a long shot.
Should he be cut from the 76ers, the smart move would be to send him to Delaware so he can work on areas of his game that need improvement like his ball handling and shooting. With the way the 76ers current roster is constructed, Sampson could easily be called up the Philadelphia if he shows his skills in the D-League.