Dewayne Dedmon Expected to Sign 10-Day Contract with Philadelphia 76ers

Dewayne Dedmon's Short Chart This Season
Dewayne Dedmon's Short Chart This Season

Dedmon's second call-up this season, also second call-up for D-League since last week's showcase.

According to Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports via Twitter, Dewayne Dedmon of NBDL's Santa Cruz Warriors is expected to sign a 10-day contract with the Philadelphia 76ers.  The Sixers aren't just signing a big man, they're signing the best the D-League has to offer.  After a woeful 2012 season which saw Andrew Bynum on the shelf for an entire year, followed by the draft-day trade for Nerlens Noel, the Sixers are on the lookout for a big to take up space in the middle and run the floor as well.  Though not your typical center, Dewayne Dedmon has a lot to offer a team like Philadelphia.

Rebounding Machine:

In 15 games with the Santa Cruz Warriors, Dedmon averaged 13.5 rebounds per contest, including a 21 rebound performance Dec. 17 against the Los Angeles D-Fenders.  He's quick to the ball and has the length to take up a lot of space.  The term 'ball-hawk' is thrown out there a lot, but Dedmon controlled the boards to the point where the Warriors posted a record of 8-2 when Dedmon grabbed at least 13 rebounds for his D-League team.  He's athletic enough to find his way to the ball when necessary. 

What's remarkable about Dedmon's rebounding numbers is he pulled down at least five offensive rebounds in nine of those 15 games, a remarkable number at that. 

Block Party:

Dedmon, though eager at times, is always willing to go after the ball and block a shot when necessary.  He averaged 2.3 blocks a game, including a six block game against the Idaho Stampede on Dec. 22, a key game for Santa Cruz against one of the D-League's top teams.  While Dedmon's agility and quickness plays into his role as a defender, sometimes he's too anxious to block a shot and ends up drawing a foul.  Other times he'll go for the block that gets fans up in their seats instead of the well-timed block to a fellow teammate that can push the ball up the floor.

The Mid-Range Jumper:

While over 55 percent of Dedmon's shots are inside the key, he's not afraid to shoot the mid-range jumper either.  Santa Cruz Warriors coach Casey Hill knows Dedmon resorts to the shot because he's comfortable with it as it's a difficult shot to defend in the undersized D-League.

He's been remarkably accurate given the small sample size (21 percent of his shots from the 8-to-16 foot-range), but Dedmon needs to perfect his post-game if he wants to become a more well-rounded player in the NBA.  His sheer athleticism will only take him so far and he needs to improve on the block to take his game to the next level and remain a constant in the Association.

Tremendous Upside:

Let's remember, Dedmon only started playing organized basketball in April, 2008 at Anteleope Valley College because of religious reasons.  If you haven't read it, the Sports Illustrated Article on Dedmon's ascension story is required reading for everyone.  He is a project player there's no question, but given what he's been able to accomplish in just nearly six years of playing organized basketball, there's no telling what he can accomplish with perhaps another year of training and conditioning with an NBA team. 

While it's merely a 10-day contract, it's an opportunity for Dedmon to prove himself once again after an initial call-up with Golden State earlier this year led to minimal playing time and his eventual release.  While the Warriors have shown interest in the big man, their current focus is finding a backup point-guard for Stephen Curry.  Philadelphia is receiving a major upgrade at the center position.  Ranked dead last in points per game given up in the NBA this year, Dedmon may be the piece the Sixers need to make a run for the playoffs (the team is only three games out in the woeful Eastern Conference). 

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