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Sixers release Demetrius Jackson from two-way deal, likely to sign Haywood Highsmith

Highsmith has been one of the G-League's most intriguing players.

Demetrius Jackson was signed to a two-way contract.
Demetrius Jackson was signed to a two-way contract.Read moreTOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer

The 76ers released Demetrius Jackson from his two-way contract on Sunday.

There’s a great chance the team will use the vacant spot on Delaware Blue Coats swingman Haywood Highsmith, according to sources. The Blue Coats are the Sixers’ NBA G-League affiliate.

Highsmith’s agent, Mason Ashe, would not comment about a potential two-way deal.

The Sixers could fill the position in the coming days.

If a deal with Highsmith is reached, the Sixers will elevate one of the G-League’s most intriguing players.

The raw 6-foot-7, 220-pounder averaged 13.8 points while shooting 40.2 percent on three-pointers through 21 games played with the Blue Coats. In December, the Sixers brought the Baltimore native in to work out with veteran NBA free agents Sean Kilpatrick, Arron Afflalo, and Brandon Rush.

There’s a sense that Highsmith will have an opportunity to play in the NBA this season either on a two-way deal or on a 10-day contract. Teams were allowed to start signing players to 10-day contracts on Saturday. A player can sign a maximum of two consecutive 10-day contracts with the same team before that squad must either sign him for the remainder of the season or release him.

Teams have until Jan. 15 to sign a player to a two-way deal.

Last season, NBA rosters were expanded from 15 to 17 players. The final two spots are for two-way players who can go between the NBA and the G-League.

NBA teams are allowed to bring two-way players up for a maximum of 45 days. After that, teams have to sign players to the regular 15-man roster or send them to the G-League. In that case, the Sixers would have to release someone to make room for the two-way player.

Second-round pick Shake Milton is signed to the Sixers’ other two-way contract.

This was the second season in which Jackson was signed to a two-way deal with the Sixers. He averaged 3.7 points and 6.5 minutes in six NBA games this season. Jackson was praised on Jan. 2 by Sixers coach Brett Brown after scoring eight points on 3-for-3 shooting in 13 minutes, 40 seconds of a road victory over the Phoenix Suns.

That turned out to be his last game with the Sixers. He’s expected to sign a deal to play in China.