Sixers’ Mike Scott Discusses His Return to Philadelphia
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) -- At the trade deadline during the 2018 NBA season, the Philadelphia 76ers were in search of a move that could take their team to the next level. Sixers General Manager Elton Brand got on the phone with an organization he's quite familiar with -- the Los Angeles Clippers.
As the Clippers possessed a veteran shooter who could clearly boost the Sixers starting lineup, the 76ers were willing to take a chance. Therefore, they wanted to make a splash at the trade deadline to acquire Tobias Harris. However, the Sixers ended up receiving more than just Harris in the deal. They landed Boban Marjanovic and Mike Scott as well.
While the hype surrounded Harris in the beginning, somehow the role player in the deal ended up garnering a ton of fame within the city of Philadelphia. It happened as he portrayed what many believe to be the behavior of a hard-working, blue-collar, typical Philadelphian.
Sixers' forward Mike Scott is no Philadelphia native. At this point though, it feels like he's been here for at least all of his career. In just about a half of a season, Scott received unconditional love from Philly fans, which had some getting his name actually tattooed on their bodies and creating a 'cult-like' fan base in the city recognized as 'The Hive.'
Outsiders didn't understand, as the idea of fans overly cheering for an off-the-bench role player didn't make sense. However, Sixers fans pretty much piggybacked off of the Eagles fans slogan of the 2017 Super Bowl run, "No one likes us, we don't care."
Sixers fans needed a player like Mike Scott to cheer for -- and Mike Scott seems to have needed Philly as well. Before his departure from Los Angeles, Scott was averaging under 15 minutes-per-game, where he produced 4.8 points-per-game, and shot 39-percent from long range. During his 27 games in Philly, he averaged 7.8 points-per-game, shot 41-percent from long range, and played in just under 25 minutes.
At the end of his short run with the Sixers, Scott acknowledged his struggles with the Clippers along with his resurgence in Philly. And before leaving the podium in Philly for what could've been the final time, Scott made it clear he would like to return -- followed by his signature saying "I ain't no b*tch," which stole the hearts of gritty Philly fans everywhere.
Elton Brand and company were listening. And they proved that to be a fact when they decided to make Scott a two-year offer, for just under $10 million. Knowing that's where he wanted to continue his career, Scott wasted no time inking the deal. "Philly was the place I wanted to be," he said to the media during his re-introduction on Tuesday.
What was it about the Sixers and the city of Philadelphia that reeled him in? The fact that they embraced Scott's blue-collar vibe. Scott is no superstar in the NBA, and he knows this. With eight years of NBA experience under his belt, Mike Scott only started in eleven games.
As he said it took him seven years to figure out that less is more for him, Scott is officially focused on "doing the dirty work," rather than trying to stand out on the stat sheet. In Philly, remaining 'gritty' and keeping it real can go a long way. Now that Scott is where he truly belongs, he can feel comfortable as he focuses on becoming the best player he can be for the Philadelphia 76ers.
Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for South Jersey's 97.3 ESPN. You can follow Justin on Twitter: @JGrasso_