The Sixers had one of the most productive starting five's in the NBA last season, but that unit will have a new look to open the season in Boston tonight.

Head coach Brett Brown confirmed his plans to start 2017 No. 1 overall pick Markelle Fultz over last year's starter, J.J. Redick, and the coach knows people will be focused on that decision.

"Its certainly come with a lot of thought," Coach Brown admitted. "It doesn't make it right, but its come with a lot of thought.  And as a 20-year old Markelle Fultz, we'll experience some inevitable ups-and-downs, I'm not. I want to give this an appropriate amount of time, and everyone is going to have their own notion, or idea of what that equals."

Fultz had an up-and-down preseason run for the Sixers, after starting out strong in the teams' preseason opener, Fultz struggled in the final three preseason games, averaging 7.3 points, and shooting just 38.5 percent from the floor, 20 percent from 3-point range and 50 percent from the free-throw line.

"It's been ups-and-downs," Fultz said.  "But at the end of the day I've just been working, I stay to my roots, just what I know, work hard and just wait for an opportunity.  Now that I am back, feeling good, healthy and have a chance to go out and play with my brothers and teammates - i'm very excited, I have a lot of energy, its been a long summer."

The change moves one of the most productive Sixers, Redick, to the bench.  The veteran guard averaged a career-high 17.1 points per game last season, but will add some scoring punch to the Sixers bench that lost veterans Marco Belinelli and Ersan Ilyasova.

More From 97.3 ESPN