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Sixers' Tyrese Maxey Has a Fan in Blazers Star CJ McCollum

Tyrese Maxey has made impressive strides in his overall development through his rookie season and the start of his second year in the NBA. Although he was in and out of the Sixers' rotation last year, Maxey has benefitted from the absence of Ben Simmons as he's been Philly's starting point guard for the first seven games.

When training camp started in late September, Sixers head coach Doc Rivers made it clear he wanted Maxey to work on his playmaking skills so he could become a more polished overall point guard. Lately, he's had quiet games, but that doesn't necessarily indicate he hasn't been playing well.

In fact, Maxey's off to a solid start this season. Averaging 30 minutes on the court, Maxey has accounted for 14 points per game and four assists per game. When he faced the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday night, Maxey was going against an outstanding backcourt filled with stars such as Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum. 

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After the shorthanded Sixers defeated the Blazers and advanced to 5-2 on the year, the latter star discussed what he saw out of Maxey and made it clear that Monday night wasn't the first time McCollum was impressed with the young guard.

"He's very fast, and he's explosive," McCollum said in regards to Maxey. "I think he's still figuring out how to run a team, but I like what I have seen and have been a fan of his game since Kentucky. He's a smart player, and I have heard a lot of good things about him. He's got a very bright future."

That's quite the endorsement for Maxey from a notable player. While Maxey is far from a finished product at the point guard position, his development in under two years after spending just one season at the University of Kentucky has been impressive. And as long as Maxey continues to garner minutes -- the young guard will only get better as his second NBA season progresses.

Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him for live updates on Twitter: @JGrasso_.