Philadelphia 76ers: Sixth Man will be good role for Markelle Fultz early on

LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 08: Markelle Fultz
LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 08: Markelle Fultz /

Markelle Fultz was drafted first overall this past NBA Draft to be a difference maker. No one saw him starting the year off the bench, but it is a role he can thrive in while continuing to develop.

Markelle Fultz has star potential for the Philadelphia 76ers, there is no question about that. This preseason hasn’t been anything special for the point guard, as he has struggled with his shot as well as creating separation. In short spurts, he has shown the play making ability that made him the first overall pick in this year’s NBA Draft.

More from Section 215

Coach Brett Brown has recently made the decision to bring Fultz off of the bench to start the season, going with Jerryd Bayless in the starting lineup instead. While this move may upset fans, Fultz doesn’t seem quite ready for the bright lights right this minute.

Suffering a right shoulder injury in the preseason didn’t help Fultz’s cause, but even before that injury, he made some questionable plays. Coming off the bench to start the year will let the rookie recover from his injury without having to play a huge role from the start, plus forming chemistry with key bench players will only help later down the road.

Bayless is a spark plug, and while he may not be long for the starting lineup, he will play a big role for the team this year. His ability to score in bunches is better suited for a bench role, but Fultz will be able to fill that role as well. The shooting ability will improve throughout the year, and making plays won’t be a problem at any point for Fultz, as the team may just have to take things a little slower than expected.

Not to be forgotten, confidence is a big thing to have for a professional athlete of any sport. Having Fultz as the sixth man, he won’t be playing against the top stars of the opposing teams, most likely playing against backup level players that he could potentially dominate. Giving a young player confidence to start the year is incredibly important, something that would help Fultz throughout the rest of his rookie year.

Next: Embiid’s minutes for 76ers first game could be in teens

Sixth man is a role Fultz could thrive in early on before thrusting him into the starting lineup. The decision to bring a top pick off the bench is not an easy one to make, but one the Sixers should feel comfortable in doing. Fultz has all the makings of a future star, and bringing him off the bench for the start of his rookie year doesn’t change anything.