dziennika egzotyczny pieścić medycyny centrum medyczne zdrowie Denver

Column: Sixers Still Not Showing Strides

Sam Amico, the founder and editor of and a broadcast journalist for Fox Sports Ohio, will write a weekly feature for Hoops Rumors with news, rumors and insight from around the NBA. If you missed last week’s edition, click here.

At least the Philadelphia 76ers have a plan. But is it a plan that’s good for their fans and the NBA in general?

“Anybody can say they’re going to be good in five years,” one NBA coach told me. “How about winning some games?”

Sixers GM Sam Hinkie isn’t opposed to winning. He just seems OK with not winning, too.

Hinkie clearly believes you win later, and win bigger later, by losing now. It’s a theory that places success on things such as lottery picks, trade exceptions, and young players who may or may not be confused by management’s acceptance of failure.

“It’s tough enough to build a winning culture when you’re trying to win,” the opposing coach said. “So imagine what it’s like to build a winning culture when you’re OK with losing all the time.”

There was a time, and not long ago, when the Sixers were considered among the NBA’s traditional powers, right up there with the Celtics and Lakers.

“When I was a kid, they were the only three teams on television,” the coach said. “I basically thought the NBA consisted of three teams, and there were times the Sixers looked like the biggest and baddest.”

Back in the league’s golden era of the 1980s, the Sixers boasted names such as Julius Erving, Andrew Toney, Charles Barkley and Moses Malone. After some so-so years in the 1990s, they returned to the Finals behind Allen Iverson, coach Larry Brown, and a bunch of basketball scrap metal in 2001.

So it was only more recently that the Sixers became a laughingstock.

It was only recently they seemed to lose much of their fan base with promises of a process that, so far, has done nothing but gone kaput.

Since Hinkie took the reigns as GM in 2013, the Sixers have been nauseating. They lose, they look awful, they play the lottery, they compile draft picks, they make coach Brett Brown’s hair turn gray.

The idea is for the Sixers to eventually land the next LeBron James or Tim Duncan in the draft. The more likely scenario seems to be them turning into the Eastern Conference version of the Timberwolves or Kings — two teams that can’t win for losing. Or in the case of the Sixers, it’s more like can’t lose for winning.

Now, the Sixers have some nice starting points in second-year center/power forward Nerlens Noel, and perhaps rookie center/power forward Jahlil Okafor.

Noel is already among the league’s premier rim-protectors, and Okafor, the No. 3 overall draft pick, has displayed a penchant for playing with his back to the basket.

Who will actually throw these guys the ball on the block is anyone’s guess — unless the names of guards Pierre Jackson, Nik Stauskas, Isaiah Canaan or Scottie Wilbekin excite you.

You could also say the Sixers’ third-best player might be forward Carl Landry, and he’s a journeyman who may not even be around when training camp starts.

As for the other notable returnees? Well, second-year center Joel Embiid is out again with a foot injury. Early signs point to him becoming The Next Greg Oden.

That leaves the Sixers with the likes of Robert Covington, Jerami Grant, Hollis Thompson and perhaps Henry Sims, an unrestricted free agent center who may be brought back after the latest news on Embiid.

All are nice young players, but we’re not talking Dr. J, Mo Cheeks and Barkley here. Far from it. Far from anything that resembles even average basketball, in fact.

“What really is the plan?” the opposing coach asked. “Maybe it’s to keep just convincing ownership to hang on a little longer while the process plays out. But that’s not really a plan. That’s an excuse.”

newest oldest

16 thoughts on “Column: Sixers Still Not Showing Strides

  1. Darryl

    Were they building a great winning culture for the previous decade when they were finishing as the 7/8 seed or just outside of the playoffs? Why does no one bring up those mediocre years when complaining about how Hinkie is doing it?

  2. Jlluft

    Maybe the plan is to pay the absolute minimum team salary required by the CBA, year after year, while raking in their share of the luxury taxes paid by teams over the cap thereby making the owner a handsome profit until forced to sell and then the real cash windfall occurs as franchise values continue to skyrocket. Like they say, this is, after all, a business.

    • Sixers don’t get any revenue sharing money. Try again.

  3. RJC824

    I would much rather gather assets by losing as compared to being a low seed in the playoffs every year with no chance of winning in the playoffs. Nerlens, Okafor, 4 first rounders, Saric and a ton of money seems like a good plan.

    • Matt

      Exactly. Its not like they would be any good by keeping the guys they traded away.

    • Chris

      Don’t forget the ability to swap with Sacramento the next 2 years as well

  4. John

    The problem with the Hinkie approach is that players aren’t static. They aren’t machines that will produce in every situation. Put players on a team that is OK with losing, and pretty soon they too will be OK with losing … and it’s very difficult to then teach them how to win.

    Hinkie has also taught the players that they are very replaceable. MCW wins Rookie of the Year … and Hinkie trades him the first chance he gets, drooling over the chance to add yet another draft pick. What message does that send to the other players? Are you going to play extra hard for a team that will get rid of you the first chance it gets? Probably not. Players are human. If they keep hearing that they’re not valuable, and that losing is acceptable, it’s going to warp their development. It’s not like winning is a switch that can suddenly be flipped once you have enough young players on board.

    Don’t believe me? Then here’s your challenge. Name me one team that won a title after tanking for multiple seasons and collecting high picks as a result. Show me the teams that have followed this blueprint and won. And for extra credit, compare the number of teams that have won using this strategy to the number of teams that have wandered aimlessly in the desert for years, losing tons of games while mumbling about “assets” and “someday.”

    • Caldwell

      Where do you think the Thunder got Durant, Westbrook, Harden, and Ibaka?

    • Caldwell

      Do you think that the Celtics magically got the trade chips that they cashed in for Allen and Garnett? They were 24-58 the year before they won it all. 33-49 right before that. Not by accident. Tanking for assets, then cashing them in.

    • Jacob Jackson

      The Warriors blatantly tanked the year they drafted Harrison Barnes. Their pick was only top-7 protected, and they desperately lost games the final month to increase the odds of keeping the pick.

  5. smittybanton

    Pure hot garbage: “There was a time, and not long ago, when the Sixers were considered among the NBA’s traditional powers, right up there with the Celtics and Lakers.”

    Not long ago? That was from 1975-1985! When is thirty years “not long ago”? The Pistons and Bulls overtook them very quickly. Are you forgetting 1993? Are you forgetting Moses Malone for Jeff Ruland? Are you forgetting the #1 pick Brad Daugherty for Roy Hinson? Are you forgetting Charles Barkley for Jeff Hornacek, Tim Perry? Are you forgetting Shawn Bradley over Penny Hardaway? Did you forget 2001 came out of nowhere, then back to bare relevance?

    Are you forgetting the Sixers in 2012 were built around Jrue Holiday, Evan Turner, Spencer Hawes and Thaddeus Young, no cap space and no draft picks? Are you paying attention to what those players are worth right now?

    Joel Embiid, Nerlens Noel, Jahlil Okafor, Dario Saric? Even with question marks, how is that not an uber talented core of seven footers, each with their own specialty. How do you ignore taking a reasonable flyer in Nik Stauskas along with another first round pick from Sac in 2018?

    Bottom line: If you were a GM looking for a job, why would you not want the team with $70M in cap space in 2017, four first round picks in 2016, Sacramento’s first in 2018, a bevy of second round picks til 2020, the rights to swap with Sac in 2016 & 2017, along with Embiid, Noel, Okafor and Saric?

    If the question is whether Hinkie is the right guy to spend those assets, then call his talent judgment into question, with facts. But then you’d run into the problem that MCW, Noel, Jeram Grant, KJ McDaniels, and probably Richaun Holmes all should have been drafted higher than they were, and that Robert Covington and Tony Wroten were excellent pickups for free.

    If the Sixers land Jamal Murray and Ben Simmons (not to mention let’s say Melo Trimble or Isaiah Briscoe), then you’re talking Jamal Murray, Ben Simmons, Nik Stauskas, Robert Covington, Dario Saric, Nerlens Noel, Jahlil Okafor, Joel Embiid. And the same goes if they get Brandon Ingram and Malik Newman, or say Jaylen Brown and Ivan Raab….

    Plus 60M in cap space in 2016. But assuming its not used in ’16, that’s $70M+ in 2017 when there’s a number of free agents, particularly point guards. Plus more draft picks…. Also, Robert Covington, Jerami Grant, Jakarr Sampson, Richaun Holmes are on four year contracts near the NBA minimum with the last two years guaranteed.

    That’s a lot of Kool-Aid….

    • Chris

      Another thing to think of is that they are building a brand new state of the art practice facility that should be ready by 2017. That along with the young core may bring in quality free agents if they can start climbing in wins.

  6. Jacob Jackson

    Sam, you’re capable of much better than this article. We have a grand total of one source – unwilling to go on the record, at that – in the entire piece. He’s obviously cynical about the plan, but we’d EXPECT him to be – he’s a coach, paid to think about the present and present-day players. Wouldn’t it have been far more valuable to give us readers the opinion of a rival FO executive at least – someone paid to think about a team’s future, salary cap considerations, the best time to rebuild, etc?

    • Caldwell

      My bet is that he’s George Karl. Team DMC:

      • Caldwell

        Dammit. What happened to my GRASS SNAKE GRASS emoticons?

  7. Chris

    His plan is good but also relies on luck which is obviously not on his side. When you have the possibility to get 4 first round picks in one draft and only end up with your own, that’s bad luck.

    Cleveland winning the top pick 3 of the previous 4 drafts was good luck for them. Then they were able to send 2 of those picks to Minnesota for Love.

    Sixers wanted Wiggins, ended up the number 3 pick, Sixers wanted Russell ended up with the number 3 pick again. Had they gotten the 1 last year and had Wiggins to match with Noel and got Stauskus and was able to draft Okafor or Russell that nucleus is looking better and better.

    Hinkie has a plan, it’s the luck that’s evasive.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 Notify me of followup comments via e-mail.

You can click here to Subscribe without commenting

Get the hottest NBA news and rumors before anyone else! Follow us on Twitter to stay updated: