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To pass the time until the 2021-22 season begins for the Philadelphia 76ers, we look back at some of the bigger players in the franchise’s recent history.
In this edition, we continue our focus on the 2000s and one of the team’s stars during the decade. While the Sixers were not exactly a powerhouse in the 2000s decade, they were still a fun team to watch as they used a lot of youth to be able to run up and down the floor.
This edition focuses on the big man of the team, Samuel Dalembert. Philadelphia selected the versatile big man out of Seton Hall with the 26th pick in the 2001 NBA draft. After he missed his second season due to a knee injury, Dalembert became the team’s regular starting center in the 2003-04 season.
Dalembert played eight seasons with the Sixers and he averaged 8.1 points, 8.3 rebounds and 1.9 blocks across that time. He provided the team with tough defense around the basket and became a legitimate shot-blocking threat from the weak side which gave the perimeter defenders the leeway to make mistakes knowing he was back there to clean most of them up.
Dalembert’s best season was 2007-08 when he averaged 10.5 points, 10.4 rebounds and 2.3 blocks and helped the Sixers charge into the playoffs. He followed that by averaging 9.0 points, 9.5 rebounds and 1.7 blocks against a tough Detroit Pistons team in that postseason.
Dalembert was never an All-Star or anything like that, but he was a very solid center. He knew his role and he played it to a T meaning all he had to was rebound, block shots, and run the floor when the time called for it.