Philadelphia 76ers coach Brett Brown has been a long-time supporter of Australian basketball, and made an interesting comment about Jonah Bolden’s potential on the international stage.
After the Sixers had clinched their 121-105 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers today, Philadelphia head coach Brett Brown was asked about reserve big man Jonah Bolden and whether he would be ready for FIBA basketball later this year, especially when it came to donning the Boomers green and gold.
Brown answered in the affirmative, and went on to to elaborate.
“I used to coach the Australian team, and one of the things we set up years ago was a national depth chart, so that you didn’t blink and get caught.
“Back in the day you had [Tony] Ronaldson and so on, David Anderson at that four spot. Then you started reaching. Started going small with Barlow or Ingles or whatever.
“I think that [Jonah] is an international four man. As I judge the history of Australian basketball, especially that really important position – I think he can be that. I think he can be a starting four internationally.”
Coach Brown also talked about Bolden’s development with the three-point shot, something that’s rapidly becoming a key weapon for big men everywhere.
After the same game, Sixers point guard Ben Simmons was asked about his thoughts on the upcoming FIBA World Cup, and when he would commit to the tournament.
“Not yet,” Simmons replied lightly. “I have no idea. I don’t even know what I am going to have for dinner.”
He did however, confirm his desire to join the Boomers, when asked about whether he wanted to play.
“Of course. I always want to represent Australia.”
Following the unforgotten disappointment in the Rio Olympics, the World Cup is a fresh start and holds high Australia’s hopes of achieving a medal once again. This is especially true, with the infusion of youthful NBA-level talent in Simmons, Bolden, Thon Maker and more.
*This report was produced in collaboration with Ben Mallis.