NBA playoffs finally beckon for Buddy Hield after 632 games

NBA playoffs finally beckon for 76ers’ Buddy Hield after 632 games

/ 04:29 PM April 18, 2024

Philadelphia 76ers' Buddy Hield NBA

Philadelphia 76ers’ Buddy Hield looks on during the NBA basketball game against the Orlando Magic, Friday, April 12, 2024, in Philadelphia. The 76ers won 125-113. (AP Photo/Chris Szagola)

PHILADELPHIA — Tyrese Maxey sat on his locker room chair and yelled loud enough after Philadelphia beat Miami in an NBA play-in tournament game to welcome one of the newest 76ers to the postseason club.

“Buddy Hield! Welcome to the playoffs!” Maxey said.


Indeed, Hield is set to make his NBA postseason debut — and all it took was 632 regular-season games plus one more bonus game Wednesday night in the 76ers’ 105-104 win over the Heat.


READ: NBA: Tyrese Maxey scores career-high 50 points, 76ers win 8th straight

The 31-year-old Hield held the dubious distinction of most NBA games without a playoff appearance by an active player.

“I’m just glad we got the win,” Hield said. “I’m glad I go to the playoffs for the first time. I’m ready.”

He played 57 games with the New Orleans Pelicans in 2016-17 and 385 games with the Sacramento Kings. He played 158 games with the Indiana Pacers before he was traded to the 76ers at this season’s trade deadline for Marcus Morris Jr., Furkan Korkmaz and three second-round draft picks. He played the final 32 games with the Sixers.

READ: NBA: Tyrese Maxey scores career-high 52 points, 76ers outlast Spurs in 2OT

Because of the trade, Hield actually played 84 games this season. He also played for the Pacers in the In-Season Tournament title game in December, Game 85 which didn’t count toward the official total. Game No. 86 pushed him into the playoffs. He hit a 3-pointer when the Sixers rallied from 14 down and finished with seven points.


“I think it’s something pretty cool,” coach Nick Nurse said. “Pretty cool to be able to do that, especially in this day and age.”

Hield has been one of the top 3-point shooters in the NBA for years in both volume and makes. He hit at least 260 in four straight seasons with the Kings and made a career-high 288 last season with the Pacers.

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