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Coming into the NBA, Philadelphia 76ers former first-round pick Matisse Thybulle was viewed as a defense-first player. As Thybulle was the Naismith Defensive Player of the Year coming out of college, he already had a strong reputation on the defensive side of the ball coming out of Washington.

However, his offense was always a question mark. And it's been that way through his first few seasons in the NBA. In years one and two, Thybulle averaged just four points per game while shooting 33-percent from three.

While his scoring average has slightly risen in year three, Thybulle has admitted earlier this year that he's still working on becoming a more confident offensive weapon for the Sixers. He's still got a long way to go, but on Monday, Thybulle showed some impressive flashes on the offensive side of the ball during the Sixers' shorthanded win over the Kings.

In 32 minutes on the floor, Thybulle attempted eight shots. He was extremely efficient as six of those attempts were successful. After knocking down six buckets with one coming from beyond the arc, and going 2-2 from the free-throw line, Thybulle finished his night on Monday with a season-high of 15 points. 

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“I thought he was better defensively, but offensively, he was fantastic,” said Sixers head coach Doc Rivers after the game. “He ran the floor. If you remember, right before COVID, we started releasing him on the break because we thought if we can get him in the open court, he can score a little bit. He did that tonight. He had great cuts for us. He did a lot of really nice things.”

Thybulle hasn't spent too much time on the court lately. After the veteran guard tested positive for COVID-19 a few weeks ago, he was forced to miss seven-straight games. Finally, this past Saturday, Thybulle returned to action against the Portland Trail Blazers. 

In his first 21 minutes on the floor since November 4, Thybulle had an impressive showing on offense as he scored nine points off of five shots before following up Saturday's game with his season-high. When asked about what's helped Thybulle become more successful on offense lately, Rivers noted his confidence could be growing as he gets comfortable within his role.

“I think he needed me to be more confident in him maybe offensively and just allow him to play,” Rivers explained. “I think he understands now from me what I need him to be and how I need him to play and he’s really embraced it. He has embraced the cut game. He’s embraced being a picker and roller. That’s tough for a guard and he’s doing that so I think it’s probably a little bit of both.”

There are still a lot of games left to be played. So, Thybulle has to prove he can sustain this kind of reliable production for the Sixers as the season progresses in order for Doc Rivers to be more comfortable with relying on Thybulle on both sides of the court and not just on defense. But so far, he's off to a good start since returning. 

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