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Doc Rivers gives thoughts on development of Tyrese Maxey, Paul Reed

MILWAUKEE — The first rookie class of the Doc Rivers era for the Philadelphia 76ers was led by Tyrese Maxey and Paul Reed. Both were selected in the 2020 NBA draft, and they developed and learned from Rivers to become the players they are today.

Maxey is a legitimate All-Star who had to earn his minutes under Rivers in his rookie season. He had shown flashes, but Rivers wasn’t just going to hand him anything. He had to continue to grow as a player, especially when it comes to finishing at the basket, and now, Maxey is among the best players in the game.

“It hasn’t been a surprise,” Rivers said of Maxey’s ascension. “I thought he had a chance to make the All-Star team last year. He’s just a phenomenal kid. He’s got great confidence. He’s a great shooter and I thought the league had caught in on that at least last year.”

One of the biggest areas of improvement for Maxey is his ability to finish at the basket. As a rookie, he relied a lot on his floater and Rivers wanted him to get out of that mindset.

“What he’s done consistently, you know, his first year, he struggled finishing,” Rivers explained. “He took a lot of floaters and in each year, he’s kind of figured out where he can—he’s got the Tyrese move now where he gets fouled going to the basket. I don’t think it’s a foul now. Last year, I thought it was a foul. I’m just happy for him because he deserves it.”

As for Reed, he still has some development to go in his young career, but the big man has made serious strides. He has improved his understanding of the game on either end of the floor and he has improved as a 3-point shooter. He has improved year by year.

“The raw stuff was there,” Rivers said of Reed. “Being a good rebounder, being a hustle player, that’ll never go away. I think where my guess is they’re trying to develop is all the little things. Seeing the game better and stuff and that takes time. It takes repetition and I think there’s been progress there.”

Maxey and Reed are, obviously, better players now than they were in the 2020-21 season, but they wouldn’t have been able to make those strides without the guidance of Rivers. It’s obvious that he had an impact on their young careers.

Story originally appeared on Sixers Wire