Since he was hired as the team's head of basketball operations in May, new Sixers GM Sam Hinkie has made some interesting decisions, including trading the club's best player (Jrue Holiday), launching a full-fledged rebuild, and conducting a head coaching search that lasted well until August. During his first several months on the job, Hinkie hasn't offered as many interviews as some of his fellow GMs, but he recently spoke to Bob Cooney of the Philadelphia Daily News about a number of topics of note. Here are a few of Hinkie's more interesting quotes from the conversation:
On the secrecy of the Sixers' new front office:
"Every little edge you can get is important. There is some level of secrecy as teams try not to let on to what they're doing. If we were to have had Nerlens Noel come in and work out before the draft, that would have caused a stir being that we had the 11th pick, and the kind of things that happened on draft night possibly couldn't have been possible. So we chose not to let teams know who we are working out, and a lot of forward-thinking organizations do that with the comings and goings of potential players. We did a lot of trading in the second round and that was because people didn't know our interest in [Arsalan] Kazemi."
On the team's coaching search:
"I would say things largely progressed as I would have anticipated. Finding the right guy was always the priority, and when we did in Brett Brown we moved forward. Our first interviews were in Las Vegas in mid-July when I went out there for the summer league, just after the Orlando Summer League. It was a solid week of interviews. Then there were a few more to follow and then some more. I was focused immensely on finding who was the best fit for what we were looking to do."
On whether a massive rebuild was hard to sell to potential coaching candidates:
"I think it's much easier than you might think. People recognize the tradition of the Sixers and what we're trying to do and they see what's ahead, and that's clear. Those plans were much clearer in July than they would have been in June. We found all the candidates that we spoke with open-eyed and excited."
On the role analytics will play in the team's roster decisions:
"We'll just try to make the best decisions with all the information, however we can get it. From everything we gather from the scouts and how players fit and how every time we get a chance to look at all the information we can. I don't think any time you look at a player you look solely at one area. Gathering as much information as you can is the way I will go about things."
On his goals for the next two or three years:
"We want to bring in a real influx of new talent into our team. We've already added several young players and we want more. I hope they come in and I hope they come in waves. We want to do a lot of things that lead to a better environment. We want to finalize a new practice facility. That not only helps how potential players view us, but how current players view their work every day. That is the way we will get where we want to go. That is what I want for this organization."