Mar 21, 2014; St. Louis, MO, USA; Kansas Jayhawks guard Andrew Wiggins (22) dunks the ball past Eastern Kentucky Colonels guard Marcus Lewis (12) in the first half during the 2nd round of the 2014 NCAA Men

Roundtable: NBA Draft, Nerlens Noel and Tanking!

Hi everybody! With the season coming to a close, our wonderful staff of writers have put together some answers to questions about the draft, Nerlens Noel and trying to have the worst record in the NBA. Enjoy!

If the Sixers fall to the third pick in the draft, with Wiggins and Parker gone, who is your pick and why?

Adam Booth: Julius Randle. He has quietly been one of the top 10 players in the nation this season. Which is hard to do on a Kentucky squad pick to go undefeated before the season began. In an objective world, post season success in college hoops shouldn’t do too much for your draft stock. But lets be real, Shabazz Napier just bolted up a lot of draft lists based on his team going to the Final Four. Randle’s Wildcats are there in Texas as well and in no short effort to what he has done on the court. As a Power forward he will be great with Noel, and even though Randle isn’t a elite defender, Noel is. Just as Noel isn’t an elite scorer, Randle is. The two Wildcats already compliment each other.

Dante Nelson: I gotta go with what the Sixers would do. I stand by my obsession for Dante Exum, but the Sixers may just go with Joel Embiid. They have Noel. Sure. Would they consider moving Noel and his lanky size to PF? I feel like the Sixers need a move for a wing guy. But, at the same time, the Sixers could use just about anybody in the projected top five of most mock drafts.

John Adair: If the Sixers wind up with the third pick, first and foremost, I hope Sam Hinkie orders a heat seeking missile on Adam Silver. Once that’s taken care of, I hope they seriously consider moving down just a couple of spots if they can get acceptable value in return. If that’s not the case, then I hope Joel Embiid is the guy. Talent is priority for teams in the Sixers’ predicament over fit. A since the Sixers won’t really be contending for anything again next year, keeping Embiid and Nerlens Noel on the roster can’t hurt. Perhaps Brett Brown and Hinkie can see what they have in both young, lanky centers and move on for a better fit for their roster moving forward.

Curt Jenkins: I say you go with Embiid. Yes his game is raw and yes we have Noel but having to great big men is a great asset to have. Look at the Spurs when they had “The Admiral” David Robinson and Tim Duncan. If you can develop them together they can take this franchise places.

Spencer Layman: If somehow the Sixers don’t get that first pick and somehow land at the third pick and SOMEHOW both Parker and Wiggins are gone, I will lose all faith in humanity (ok not really… but I will be a drama queen about it). Depending on his back, Joel Embiid is still in play for me. There has been very little information given out about his injured back. If it’s something small, he is still one of the best players in the draft. “But what about Nerlens Noel?” you may ask. Well, as much as we may want him to be, Nerlens is not a for sure thing. We all want him to be but we probably won’t see him until next year. Also, let’s say Nerlens is as good as advertised, he could be moved to the 4 (even though Brett Brown is on record saying they won’t play him there. I feel like he would reconsider if Embiid were there). Embiid and Nerlens would be a terrifying front court for years to come.

If the Sixers land the first pick, who do you select?
Adam Booth: Andrew Wiggins. I know, he hasn’t quite set the world on fire like people thought he may. But in this era of expectations, it was going to be hard to do that. Despite this he showed during his time in Lawrence, Kansas that he is capable of being the best player in the building on any given night. Even when a player like Joel Embid look to take the spotlight from his own teammate, Wiggins took in right back when the lottery pick center went down with a back injury. His numbers on any other player would wow anyone, but since Wiggins has twitter handles devoted to taking for him, they aren’t as eye popping. Either way, he isn’t Johnny Menzel and no one should be afraid to draft him. GET HIM IN RED WHITE AND BLUE… again.
Dante Nelson: I think I want Jabari Parker, if he declares. He has more of an overall game. At the same time, Wiggins and his scoring would be big for the Sixers and the way they’re built. Alright…let’s go with Wiggins.
John Adair: “With the first pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, the Philadelphia 76ers select Andrew Wiggins…” In this particular scenario, Hinkie can rescind his order of that heat seeking missile. Wiggins has more upside than anyone coming out this year, and perhaps, more than anyone in quite some time. Not only does Wiggins have the potential to be a superstar, but his athletic ability, frame, and unique skill set seem like a perfect fit for the Sixers at this time.
Curt Jenkins: If they win the draft lottery, the Philadelphia 76ers will draft Andrew Wiggins! He has the highest potential of any player. Not only that but, Wiggins will bring excitement to the city. The biggest element will be the name on the back of the jersey. Drafting a player of his caliber will elevate this team to a whole new level not seen since the Iverson era.

Do you see a point in Nerlens Noel returning this season, even if it’s only for a few games?

Adam Booth: No. No reason to. You don’t need to win games, 60% of this roster won’t be here next year so no need for chemistry. Plus knees are so fragile (See: Oden, Greg) that if you are going to play the kid, the minutes better mean something. Keep him on the bench until summer league. I am enjoying his suits and hairstyle a lot more than I did with Andrew Bynum.

Dante Nelson: No. I mean, sure he could get a few games under his belt, but if we’re talking about rust, he’s about to sit for a whole summer anyway. I don’t see the point, but I don’t really care what happens. If he plays, cool. If not, cool. Everybody needs to get off his tweet. CLEARLY, he’s a Captain America fan…

John Adair: I know my opinion differs with most on this topic, but I believe that if, and only if Nerlens is 100% healthy, he should play this season. NBA experience is irreplaceable. If he gets on the court this season, the opportunity to experience the speed of play and skill level of the guys at the NBA level could help him dramatically moving forward. With that said, I don’t think Nerlens touches the floor this season.

Curt Jenkins: Sadly I don’t see Noel suiting up. As impressive as he is in practice , it won’t do much justice to see him on the floor. We will have to wait until summer league.

Spencer Layman: I hope we don’t see Nerlens this year. I want to see a rookie of the year race between two Sixers next year; Nerlens and Wiggins. I’m sure Nerlens is itching to get out there and perform but he could hinder what they are trying to accomplish; this year could be diminished by Nerlens playing in only a couple games.  I want to see Nerlens play as much as the next person but there is no point from him to at this point.

The Sixers will likely look at a shooting guard with the New Orleans Pelicans pick in the 10-12 pick range, who do you pick there?

Adam Booth: Rodney Hood. Gary Harris maybe gone by the time the 76ers pick again. And hopefully that’s a good thing. If they get Wiggins, who a lot of people think is the SF, but is really a SG with crazy athleticism, then your backcourt is set, Then you look for a dancing partner with Noel. I also like Adreian Payne from Michigan State in a unrelated note. But in regards to the shooing guards Hood has been one of the best all season. He can shoot from anywhere, has a good head on his shoulders and has an NBA ready body. Doug Collins would of loved this child, and Brett Brown would find a way to use his talents with the play makers around him. Think about it… MCW, Hood, Wiggins, Noel… could honestly be on the same team. Amazing. Just Amazing.

Dante Nelson: As I said, I’m all for Dante Exum. He most likely wouldn’t be in that 10-12 range. And yes, I think Exum is better off being a SG in the NBA. Anyway, I guess you can take a look at Gary Harris. My hope is that they are able to package Thad with that pick and move up. Get Dante and Randle. Ah, dreams.

John Adair: With what I saw in the tournament from Gary Harris, I’m not as sold on him as I was previously, and with that said, I hope the Sixers end up with someone like Nik Stauskas. Stauskas proved that he had the ability to not just shoot it from distance, but to carry the load of a high profile college team offensively. What impressed me most was his ability to get his shot whenever he wanted in countless ways. With or without the ball, Stauskas was effective at the offensive end each and every game for Michigan.

Curt Jenkins: With the Pelicans pick I would take a serious look at Gary Harris from Michigan State. A terrific two guard who can move the ball and has the speed to get to the basket.

Spencer Layman: Blehhhhhhh. I mean, my dream pick there is Vonleh but I doubt he gets past 7 (also I think, depending on the team drafting, could go before Randle). You’re looking at Hood, Harris, McDermott and etc. At that point, I would try to trade back. I Like Harris and Hood to a certain degree. Not sure I would want them on the Sixers. Doug “Quailman” McDermott is more of a SF but scores like a SG and could be a very valuable asset on the Sixers. But I think if you can’t bag Vonleh (or Gordon) with that second pick, trading back is the best choice.

The Sixers sit two games back of the Bucks for the worst record, can they catch Milwaukee?

Adam Booth: Nah, if you lose 26 games in a row, and that still has you two games above the team behind you (let alone the fact that there is a team behind you) that squad is one of destiny to be terrible. Which is fine. Its been said countless times the worst record doesn’t get you the first pick. That being said I am ok with any pick 1-5 so let the Bucks have the worst record. With their luck they will still pick third of fourth because I am pretty sure God hates Milwaukee.

Dante Nelson: I was pretty surprised that, in all of this losing, the Bucks are still worse. I feel like the Sixers will not catch up. Losing 26 games in a row and still not be worst record-wise is something. Not sure what that something is, but it’s something.

John Adair: YESSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!! :-)

Curt Jenkins: Bottom line, the Sixers better wish for a little luck in the lottery because I find it highly unlikely that the Bucks will finish behind us. Sixers will finish with the second worst record in the NBA.

Spencer Layman: The Bucks have the Cavs, Wizards, Raptors and Hawks in their last 4 games of the season. They could potentially win maybe 2 of those games but it’s very likely they go 0-7 the rest of the year. The Sixers have the Celts twice over the next 7 games and could potentially win one of those. The rest of their schedule is Nets, Raps, Grizzlies, Bobkitties and the Heat. It is also very likely they go 0-7 on the year. It’s gonna be a suck-off between two of the most tanktastical teams in the league.

I hope we don’t see Nerlens this year. I want to see a rookie of the year race between two Sixers next year; Nerlens and Wiggins. I’m sure Nerlens is itching to get out there and perform but he could hinder what they are trying to accomplish; this year could be diminished by Nerlens playing in only a couple games.  I want to see Nerlens play as much as the next person but there is no point from him to at this point.

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