Former NBA Center Roy Hibbert Named 76ers' Player Development Specialist

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistSeptember 25, 2019

Denver Nuggets center Roy Hibbert (34) in the second half of an NBA basketball game Monday, March 13, 2017, in Denver. The Nuggets won 129-101. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
David Zalubowski/Associated Press

The Philadelphia 76ers announced Wednesday former All-Star center Roy Hibbert has joined the coaching staff as a player development specialist. 

Hibbert, 32, has been out of the NBA since 2017. The team release says he will "ensure the development of players daily by assisting with individual skill work, team development and film analysis," along with working with the coaching staff on player development.

In particular, Hibbert will likely work with Joel Embiid, Jonah Bolden, Al Horford and the rest of the big man group. Hibbert was one of the players credited with popularizing the "verticality" rule, and the Sixers have one of the longest, most potentially dominant interior defenses in the NBA.

His descent from All-Star in 2014 to out of the league a few years later is indicative of the league-wide trend toward more rangy bigs. Hibbert's slow feet made him exploitable in pick-and-rolls, and he never was able to flash much outside game during a period where the three ball grew exponentially. 

Hibbert ultimately played nine NBA seasons with the Indiana Pacers, Los Angeles Lakers, Charlotte Hornets and Denver Nuggets before announcing his retirement in July 2018.

Embiid and Horford are already among the best defensive bigs in basketball, so Hibbert's development duties will likely focus on Bolden and other younger bigs, perhaps even working with the G League outfit.