Sixers reserve Tony Bradley stays ready while supporting teammates
His playing time could hinge on Joel Embiid and backup Dwight Howard being in foul trouble or missing a game.
NEW YORK — Tony Bradley has been in this situation before.
The reserve center has played in 70 games total with just three starts during his previous three seasons with the Utah Jazz. That’s a bit misleading, considering 58 of those appearances came last season.
Right now, Bradley’s playing time could hinge on Joel Embiid’s availability and backup Dwight Howard being in foul trouble or missing a game.
“I just know through whatever, I’m just going to stay ready, stay warm, and just try to stay active on the bench and support the team the best I can,” said Bradley, who didn’t play in Wednesday night’s season-opener against Washington. “Whether I play or not, I just have to be ready.”
The fourth-year veteran says he also does extra conditioning and drills at practice to make sure he remains prepared.
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The Sixers acquired Bradley from the Detroit Pistons in exchange for shooting guard Zhaire Smith last month. The trade occurred five days after the Jazz shipped Bradley and Saben Lee to Detroit in exchange for cash.
The 6-foot-10, 260-pounder was the 28th overall pick in the 2017 draft out of North Carolina. Bradley, 22, averaged 4.9 points, 4.6 rebounds and 11.4 minutes in his 58 appearances with three starts last season.
He has averaged 4.4 points and 4.2 rebounds in his 70 career appearances heading into Saturday’s game against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden.
MSG has a different feel for Rivers
Saturday was strange for Doc Rivers.
The Sixers coach played 2½ seasons for the Knicks in the 1990s. Back then, MSG was rocking, and the city was caught up in the hometown team. It was the era of “Go New York, Go New York, Go!”
“And right now, going through the city, and very few cars, very few people walking,” Rivers said of the byproduct of the pandemic. “Walking into the Garden to no sounds is just different.”
Because of the pandemic, no fans were in attendance for Saturday’s game .
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