The Wolverine

August 2015 Issue

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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  MICHIGAN IN THE PROS BY CHRIS BALAS F ormer Michigan shooting guard Nik Stauskas' NBA career didn't begin like he hoped it would, but a change of scenery might help him kick start it. The Sacramento Kings traded Stauskas, Jason Thompson and Carl Landry to the Philadelphia 76ers as part of a salary-shedding move to pursue free agents, and Stauskas is confident he'll live up to his former first-round pick status. "This is what I was born to do," he told "I'm extremely hard working, and that's the only reason I got here, just because of my hard work … so hopefully the fans of Philadelphia understand they are getting a kid who is going to work his butt off to do everything he can to win games." Stauskas was with the team during the NBA Summer League but did not play. He reportedly twisted his right ankle this offseason after averaging 4.4 points per game and shooting 36.5 percent with the Kings. "Coming into this organization, the fact that they are rebuilding gives me an opportunity to have a new start to my career and show people I belong," Stauskas said of the Sixers. "Shooting is my bread and butter, but in college I feel like the majority of my work was done in the pick- and-roll with the ball in my hands. "Obviously, playing in the NBA is a different level, and it's going to take adjustments to have that same efficiency and effectiveness in pick- and-rolls. I definitely think that I'm that type of player that can play off the dribble, and who can not only score for myself, but get other guys involved, as well. "There were numerous times last year that I would go on the floor, and I was just targeted right away. Teams would attack me. The physi- cality and defense is an adjustment period, and I'm just getting better every day on it."   MICHIGAN IN THE PROS Nik Stauskas Seeks Fresh Start In Philadelphia Nik Stauskas (with U-M head coach John Beilein above) was traded from the Sacramento Kings, who drafted him eighth overall in 2014, to the Philadelphia 76ers this offseason. PHOTO BY NBA PHOTOGRAPHY

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