While it had no impact on the outcome of the Sixers’ 92-86 victory over Brooklyn on Wednesday at the Orlando Pro Summer League, Nerlens Noel swatted away a dunk attempt in the final seconds that was rather spectacular.
It was a rejection that inspired his teammates, Michael Carter-Williams and Thaddeus Young, to celebrate from the Sixers’ bench and realize the year-long absence of Noel to recover from a torn ACL was worth the wait.
Noel finished with 14 points, nine rebounds and five blocks — a stat line that you could argue didn’t completely justify how impressive he was on both ends of the floor. He also connected on a go-ahead driving layup with 48.4 seconds left that put the Sixers up for good.
“I felt active,” Noel said. “I have been working on a lot. I just feel I have to implement it into the games, especially on my jump shot.”
More good news for Carter-Williams, Young and the Sixers as a whole was the continued superb play of Casper Ware (photo above), who erupted for 24 points, eight assists and two steals. He and Noel have had excellent chemistry this week.
“We are starting to connect,” Ware said. “He helps me out because he is so athletic.”
Jerami Grant, Travis Bader and Hollis Thompson contributed 12 points each for Philadelphia, which has Thursday off and will play Friday at a time to be determined depending on where it finishes in the standings.
Donte Greene and Markel Brown each scored 17 points for the Nets, who led by as many as 11 and dished out eight more assists than the Sixers.