The Philadelphia 76ers announced on Tuesday that they signed Delaware Blue Coats forward Haywood Highsmith to a two-way contract on Tuesday.
The Sixers had an open two-way slot after they waived point guard Demetrius Jackson on Sunday. Shams Charania of The Athletic reported that Jackson is accepting a deal to play in China. Their other two-way contract is currently occupied by second-round pick Shake Milton.
Nevertheless, it does not come as a surprise to see the Sixers signing Highsmith to a two-way contract. Earlier this season, it was reported by Charania that the standout G-League player was a part of the free agent workout hosted by the Sixers.
Highsmith spoke about his workout, which included veterans Arron Afflalo and Brandon Rush with Dakota Schmidt of Ridiculous Upside.
“I was definitely excited about that. There were some guys there like Sean Kilpatrick, Brandon Rush and Arron Afflalo who are all solid players that can probably play on any NBA team,” he said.
“We competed in shooting drills and a bunch of off-ball stuff It was definitely a good experience for me to see how an NBA free agent workout is and be able to get adjusted to that. Also getting an opportunity to learn from the veterans that were there.”
This season with the Blue Coats, Highsmith is averaging 13.8 points, 6.9 rebounds, and 2.5 assists in 33.3 minutes per game. He is also shooting 45-percent from the field and 39.4-percent from three-point range on five attempts per game.
Highsmith, who is from Division II Wheeling-Jesuit University, was initially a part of the team’s summer league minicamp roster. However, the 6-foot-7 forward did not make the summer league team, but the Sixers kept tabs on him and made him one of their local tryout players.
The 22-year-old Highsmith is an intriguing prospect as he can shoot the ball pretty well from the outside and is solid defensively.
For a team such as the Sixers, who could use another 3-and-D wing with the departure of Robert Covington, it is a no brainer to sign the young forward. NBA teams have until Jan. 15 to sign players to two-way contracts with their salaries becoming guaranteed five days later.