Twenty-seven regular-season games in 2018 was all it took.
Mike Scott knew Philadelphia was his “top priority” entering free agency this year.
“[The fans] are great. They’re kind of like me," Scott said Friday night after the 76ers’ final preseason game. "You can’t be weak here. You can’t have soft skin, and that’s how I like to play.”
Scott was traded to the 76ers along with forward Tobias Harris and center Boban Marjanovic for guard Landry Shamet, and forwards Mike Muscala and Wilson Chandler and a pair of first-round and a pair of second-round picks in a deadline deal back in February.
Last season in Philly, the 6-foot-8 forward played a substantial bench role and had two notable career-highs. He shot 41 percent from three-point range and averaged 24 minutes per game.
“I feel like I got an easy job,” said Scott said, who returned to the Sixers this summer on a two-year, $9.8 million deal. “It’s kind of similar to the Atlanta team I played on where everybody is moving the ball and playing defense.”
Playing in the front court has given Scott one of the best views of Joel Embiid’s talent. Scott played with Al Horford and Paul Millsap during their all-star seasons in Atlanta.
Still, he’s amazed when he sees what Embiid does on a consistent basis.
“He’s big. He has great footwork, and he’s athletic. He’s just a beast," Scott said. “He’s the best center in the league. If he takes that next step, he’ll be a Hall of Famer.”
This season, Scott will likely be called on as one of the first big men off the bench. When he enters the game, opponents will know about his success as a shooter.
And he’s prepared for that.