Tyrese Maxey Led Charge in Major Sixers Rotational Decision

Tyrese Maxey

Getty Tyrese Maxey #0, Philadelphia 76ers

Doc Rivers raised some eyebrows when he opted to have De’Anthony Melton start over Tyrese Maxey when the Philadelphia 76ers took on the Los Angeles Lakers on January 15.

After the Sixers would go on narrowly escape 113-112, Rivers revealed that the lineup change was not his idea but Maxey’s. Maxey believed it was for the best because of the defensive issues that come with the pairing of him and James Harden in their starting backcourt.

“Tyrese actually texted me about this in the part about him,” Rivers told reporters, per Ky Carlin of Yahoo Sports. “I didn’t go to him. He went to me, which was really nice.”

Maxey then more or less confirmed what Rivers said, believing that multiple players on the Sixers’ roster deserve to start.

“Yeah,” Maxey said. “I mean, sometimes, you gotta be the bigger person. I felt like it was kind of trending toward that way, but I’m a professional at the end of the day. I feel like I am a starter in this league, but I feel like our team is so good that I think we have multiple people starting.”

Maxey started all but one game last season and has come off the bench in four games this season. Time will tell if this adjustment will be permanent or if Maxey will be re-inserted into the starting lineup in due time.

Rivers Says Sixers Will Be Using Three Lineups From Now On

While making the latest adjustment to the Sixers’ starting lineup against the Lakers, Rivers said that the Sixers will use multiple starting lineups going forward, with each one that is used will depend on who they’re facing up against.

“We told our team that’s three lineups that we’ll be using for this point on,” Doc Rivers told reporters, per Ky Carlin of SixersWire. “Some nights, it’d be to match up to them. Some nights, it’ll be to make them match up to us.”

When the Sixers took on the Los Angeles Clippers on January 17, the Sixers went with the same lineup as they did against the Lakers.

Maxey proved himself productive off the bench against the Clippers, scoring 22 points on seven-for-12 shooting from the field and three-for-five shooting from three, putting up a team-best plus-minus of plus-23 in 28 minutes.

This new lineup adjustment has proven fruitful thus far, as the Sixers have won two games in a row with Maxey off the bench.

Sixers Could ‘Lose’ P.J. Tucker If Benched

In a January 13 The Philadelphia Inquirer article, Keith Pompey explained why he does not believe the Sixers would replace P.J. Tucker with Melton in the starting lineup.

“I don’t see it happening,” Pompey said. “That would likely kill Tucker. The forward probably joined the Sixers with the understanding that he was going to start. You can always play Tucker less and Melton more in regards to minutes during the game. But I think you might lose Tucker by taking him out of the starting lineup.”

Melton’s play this season – averaging 11 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 2.9 assists while shooting 42 percent from the field and 39.3 percent from three – has evidently warranted a promotion to the Sixers’ starting lineup. Just not in place of Tucker. Although, if what Doc says about these lineup changes is true, then Tucker may not always be paired with the starters.

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