By Jack Kerwin | firstname.lastname@example.org
Was an easy call for the masses.
Euro player previously chosen in the first round of an NBA Draft made sense to be the starter against an unheralded and undrafted American white kid when the 76ers laced 'em for real this season.
Now, hmmm ...
Frankly, never got the fascination with Sergio Rodriguez when the club signed him to make a return trip from overseas. He was OK in his first go-round here. Nothing crazy. Nothing special. Nothing more than, say, T.J. McConnell was during his initial campaign in Philly last year.
But those stigmas against McConnell – undrafted and white, American white – were the deciding factors with preconceived notions trumping reality.
Fast forward to Sunday afternoon's affair against Brooklyn, though, and even those beholden to their prejudices are coming around a bit. Which is why we're starting to hear a little rumbling for McConnell to get the nod over Rodriguez even when the latter comes back from injury.
Well, to tip things off, the Sixers are 3-1 with McConnell as the starter. They look better with him at the helm. Quicker. More aggressive. Better at moving the ball around.
Think Ryan Arcidiacano of Villanova fame ... going at a faster pace.
Rodrgiuez, meanwhile, is 5-25 as the starter.
Individual stat wise, you could make the case that they're a wash. The rub for Serg supporters, however, is that he was promoted as a superior player with superior skills that would translate into superior numbers, if not results for the team.
None of which has happened.
About the only advantages the Spaniard seems to have is as a scorer and free-throw shooter. But McConnell matches him, or tops him, everywhere else.
Those career-high 17 assists at Boston Friday night weren't too shabby, even if they came in a four-point loss.
Of course, once Ben Simmons is cleared to play, it won't really matter where Rodriguez or McConnell gets slotted. They'll both be behind the 2016 overall top pick.