By Harry Allison

The Sixers open their 2018-19 season Tursday night in Boston against the Celtics, and coach Brett Brown reiterated yesterday why he’ll start Markelle Fultz but not necessarily in the second halves of games, when he’ll go with JJ Redick:

“What it does is it lets me try to grow Markelle and bring him along at the start of a game. It’s five minutes – I think it’s not as dramatic as sometimes people do. So it’s five minutes. I’m doing that because I want to grow him. I want to grow us. Can that help us? And I believe that it can.

“And I believe the decision of, ‘Well, why don’t you do that again in the second half?’ I’m trying to give him as many minutes as I can as a point guard, and I can better do that with the way I just spelled it out, if I’m committed to starting him, and I am. I want to see how this goes, and those are the reasons.”

The easy, obvious solution would be having Fultz come off the bench and run the point for the second unit. That’s essentially what he’ll be doing in the third quarter.

“It’s a coaches’ decision, it’s a team decision, what’s best for us,” Fultz said. “Putting me in a better position, playing the one and getting the ball more. Being a playmaker, what I am. So I’m perfectly fine.”