It didn’t take the Philadelphia 76ers latest lottery selection Jahlil Okafor very long to find some comfort on the hardwood as a pro. In his NBA debut, Okafor would tally a near double-double with 20 points and nine boards, along with two blocks. But although it didn’t take him long to find his rhythm, there were the apparent jitters in the first half for the Philly big man, who shot 3-11 from the field in the first half for six points. Two pretty impressive turnaround jumpers, both of which were and-ones, overshadowed a couple forced looks and discomfort.
And then the second half came and the Okafor that Sixers fans have been so anxious to see came alive.
A handful of post moves, a soft touch and an escape route from being pinned on the baseline were all on display and before too long, Okafor had turned what looked to be an underwhelming debut into one that left people raving about his offensive capabilities; something that hasn’t been said about a healthy big man in Philly for quite some time.
The Sixers would ultimately fall to the Spurs 74-71, but the main attraction of the night was unquestionably the Sixers rookie center and in only the short amount of time we’ve been able to see him as a pro, he’s already being regarded as the most skilled big man to enter the league in the last decade.