Wizards 76ers Basketball

Philadelphia’s Robert Covington is shooting 31.8 percent overall and 23.2 percent on 3-pointers over his last six games.

Matt Slocum / AP

The Philadelphia 76ers will tell you it’s all about rhythm.

Robert Covington is going to get his back, they say. That’s why no one on the team is panicking over the small forward’s shooting slump.

Covington is shooting 31.8 percent overall and 23.2 percent on 3-pointers over his last six games. Even that’s a bit misleading, considering he had 14 points on 5-for-7 shooting against the Orlando Magic on Nov. 25. He made 2 of 4 3-pointers.

In the other five games combined, Covington shot 16 of 59 for 27.1 percent overall and 8 of 36 for 20.5 percent on threes.

But being in a shooting slump is nothing new.

He’s been in one in each of the last two seasons with the Sixers (12-9). On both occasions, he eventually shot himself out of it.

“We’ve all seen how Robert responds,” coach Brett Brown said. “He went through a massive slump at the start of last year, and Philly was on him. They were on him.”

But Covington didn’t blink. He instead used the jeers as motivation. That’s why the Sixers are confident he’ll resume being an elite shooter.

“Just because I haven’t been making shots the last few games means nothing,” Covington said. “I’m not going to let that affect me. I just got to keep going.

“I’ve been through it before. It ain’t nothing new. It will break.”

Simmons honored

Ben Simmons is the Eastern Conference rookie of the month for games played in October and November.

The Sixers point guard is second in the NBA in steals at 2.25 per game. He’s also tied for sixth in the league in assists at 7.2 with Los Angeles Lakers rookie point guard Lonzo Ball.

But Simmons has so far been the headliner of the rookie class. He leads all first-year players in scoring (18.6), rebounds (9.4), steals (2.25) in addition to being tied for first with Ball in assists.

Simmons and Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook are the only players in the league averaging at least 18 points, 9.0 rebounds and 7.0 assists.

The 21-year-old has also recorded 12 double-doubles in his 20 games played. He finished with two triple-doubles in two of those outings.

Lakers power forward Kyle Kuzma is the Western Conference rookie of the month.

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