Sixers first-round pick Tyrese Maxey didn't expect to fall to No. 21 in the 2020 NBA Draft. While he has no hard feelings towards the teams that passed up on him, Maxey seems to believe that his shooting numbers could be the cause of him dropping.
At Kentucky, Maxey started in 28 of the 31 games he appeared in. While he showed flashes of being an excellent combo guard at the next level, his shooting statistics on paper stand out in a bit of a negative way.
From the field, Maxey drained 42-percent of his attempts. From three, he knocked down just under 30-percent. Considering the Sixers needed to prioritize shooting during this year's offseason, the selection of Maxey might've had some people scratching their heads. However, Maxey and the Sixers front office believe he's only going to get better at shooting from here on out.
“People are really fixated on his shooting," said Sixers President of Basketball Operations, Dary Morey, following the draft early on Thursday morning. "We do a lot of things to try and look at mechanics and look at other measurables to see how he will shoot in the pros, and we strongly believe Tyrese will shoot better than the number that sticks next to his name. We’re optimistic on his shooting.”
Since the spring, Maxey has made it a priority to improve his shooting. Therefore, the 20-year-old guard has put up hundreds of shots every day during each practice session he participates in. "My goal is at the 6 am session, take 750 to 800 [shots], go lift, come back, and do it all over again," the first-rounder explained.
"I want to show people that I'm a way better shooter than what the numbers say," Maxey continued. "What I've been doing is working out at 6 am, go lift at 8, I'm back in the gym at 10 and sometimes going back later in the day. I want to be able to show everybody that I can knock down those threes. I'm a way better shooter than my numbers show, and that's one thing I want to show at the next level."
Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him on Twitter: @JGrasso_