Shizz Alston is fighting through some fatigue, but the recent Temple graduate isn’t complaining. Alston is in the middle of workouts that may not slow down until right before the NBA draft on June 20.
On Wednesday he worked out in Indiana for the Pacers and got home late.
At least he didn’t have to travel very far for his next audition. His Thursday workout was with the 76ers, in the Haverford School graduate’s backyard.
“It has been fun but also a grind,” said Alston, who was a first-team all-American Athletic Conference and Big Five choice this past season. “I got back from Indiana late [Wednesday] night and was here 8 a.m. It’s been a lot of workouts, catching a lot of flights, but it has been fun."
Besides Indiana and the Sixers, Alston has also worked out in Charlotte and Washington. He said he has several other workouts lined up.
The 6-foot-4, 180-pound Alston brings an ability to play either guard position. He is an excellent foul- shooter, having led the AAC and Big Five with a .908 percentage, a Temple single-season record.
He shot .350 from three-point range after hitting at a .397 clip as a junior.
Yet Alston was counted on much more his final season. He was in charge of running the attack, but the Owls also needed his offense, and he obliged. He led the AAC and Big Five in scoring, averaging 19.7 points.
While he isn’t listed on most NBA mock drafts, Alston is still holding out hope of being selected.
“I heard the best case is late second round,” he said. “I have been working out with teams [drafting] 50 and over, and that is a good thing.”
The Sixers have one first-round pick, at No. 24, and four second-round selections, 33, 34, 42, and 54.
Alston, who earned his degree in marketing this spring, is realistic enough to have a Plan B if he isn’t drafted.
“If not, I hope to sign a free-agent contract, and play summer league,” said Alston, who averaged 5.0 assists as a senior. “That is all I am looking at now and will figure out the rest after that.”
Vince Rozman, the Sixers’ senior director of scouting, who is familiar with Alston’s game, was asked what Alston would need to do to play in the NBA.
Rozman pointed out that Alston’s game grew over the years at Temple.
“This year he expanded his playmaking role, so he showed he can command a team a little bit more,” Rozman said. “He can make shots, he can do it off the dribble. He has good size at the combo position.”
One of the keys for Alston is the same for most prospects -- on the other end of the court.
“I think once he proves he can defend his counterpart, he definitely has a chance,” Rozman said.
Alston set a Temple record by hitting a three-pointer in 44 consecutive games. He finished with 1,597 career points, 13th on the all-time Temple list.
Temple went 23-10 and lost in an NCAA play-in game to Belmont, 81-70.
For Alston, there is no place he’d rather end up than with his hometown team.