Markelle Fultz’s strange NBA career took another unexpected turn on Monday, as the Philadelphia 76ers guard fired his trainer, Drew Hanlen. According to Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype.com, Fultz axed Hanlen after their relationship had crumbled in recent weeks.
Over the summer, Fultz worked out exclusively with Hanlen as the two aimed to fix the 20-year-old's shooting form. Hanlen frequently posted videos on social media throughout the offseason promoting the second-year pro, proclaiming him a future perennial All-Star.
Last week, Hanlen defended Fultz's struggles, insisting that his shooting woes were because he was “still not healthy.” Fultz refuted those injury claims, insisting he was healthy enough to play in a league where every player is dealing with some sort of ailment.
It’s not clear why exactly Fultz fired Hanlen or why they are no longer on speaking terms. One thing that is undeniable—even to the casual basketball viewer — is that Fultz’s shooting mechanics have not been fixed. His cringeworthy free-throw form was on display Sunday night against the Miami Heat.
Fultz is shooting a dreadful 57.6 percent from the free-throw line and 41.2 percent from the field. He averages 9.3 points per contest, having already appeared in more games (15) this season than he did all of his rookie campaign (14).