Furkan Korkmaz will sit out his second straight game on Friday night after re-aggravating his sprained right ankle. The Philadelphia 76ers shooting guard has been out since May 3 when he was seen limping off the court and grimacing in pain.
The injury to Korkmaz isn’t considered “too serious” as he’s only experiencing slight pain, according to TrendBasket. That’s good news for the Sixers who have watched the 23-year-old star’s rise in recent weeks. He averaged 11.6 points per game while shooting 45.2% from deep during the month of April. He was also an effective fill-in starter when Seth Curry, Ben Simmons, Tobias Harris, Danny Green all missed time.
“It’s not a big pain,” Korkmaz told reporters on April 26. “I’m not gonna exaggerate but when you play, you feel there’s something in there that makes you think about it. When you get to a game, you totally forget about it.”
Source said Furkan might be able to return this week. #Sixers https://t.co/Br5apnYZqN
— Sergen (@sergenkumas) May 6, 2021
Philadelphia has designs on the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference and holds a two-game lead on the Brooklyn Nets. The Sixers (45-21) have six games left and will have to find a way to replace Korkmaz’s dangerously reliable long-range shooting. Tyrese Maxey, George Hill, Matisse Thybulle should all see an uptick in minutes down the stretch. Not a bad thing for those guys to get extra court time.
The latest Sixers news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on Sixers newsletter here!
Join Heavy on Sixers!
Sixers Want Tyrese Maxey to Shoot More
Tyrese Maxey hasn’t been taking a ton of three-pointers, but that could all change depending on Korkmaz’s status. The rookie guard out of Kentucky has slowly been earning the coaching staff’s trust despite shooting just 28.3% from deep this season.
He nailed two deep balls on Wednesday night en route to 12 points and seven assists. After the game, Sixers head coach Doc Rivers offered a progress report on Maxey’s outside shooting.
“He’s really coming on, he just has to pick the right ones,” said Rivers. “We see him in practice, he makes them. What is he? I think 28% or 29% right now? We’re trying to get that up, but he’s a better three-point shooter than his numbers, I would say that. You are what your numbers are, I get that, but he’s better.”
.@TyreseMaxey says Joel Embiid and Tobias Harris have been encouraging him to shoot higher volume, with confidence:
“Joel’s been telling me, ‘If you’re open, shoot the ball.'”
“Tobias will yell, ‘Tyrese, you’re a great shooter!’”
— Lauren Rosen (@LaurenMRosen) May 6, 2021
Maxey revealed that veteran teammates, namely Joel Embiid and Tobias Harris, have been encouraging him to take more three-pointers. Even when the youngster misses, they are quick to build his confidence back up by telling him to keep shooting it.
Branding ‘Danny Green Cut’ For Future Generations
Anyone who watches the Sixers play basketball notices the way Danny Green sneakily slips by defenders without the ball. He can literally disappear into empty corners, then pull up and fire three-pointers at will.
Rivers has long marveled at Green’s knack for making those smart cuts, even before he started coaching him in Philadelphia.
“Hell, it’s called the Danny Green cut so clearly he probably does it better than anybody,” Rivers said. “I mean, he gets two or three a game where he was just dead open from movement. He has a knack for it. I’m really hoping all our other guys see it.”
A quick video from my Danny Green article from last week, showing some examples of him doing what Doc Rivers simply calls “The Danny Green Cut”.
Green is so good at cutting along the baseline and losing the attention of defenders to get open for corner 3s. pic.twitter.com/9IRVIdddhG
— Tom West (@TomWestNBA) May 6, 2021