To this point, I’ve seen as many mock drafts as cars on a highway and seen as many big boards as the average college campus. As the Sixers currently hold the third and tenth overall picks in the NBA Draft this upcoming Thursday, it is utterly the most talked about draft since 2003, which included LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony. General managers and front office officials self imploded rosters just to have a chance at some of the “enticing” names available at the top of the board. The Sixers most notably traded away the core of the franchise in Jrue Holiday before the season even began; then traded former lottery pick Evan Turner and big man Spencer Hawes for more picks. Sam Hinkie and company were basically setting themselves up for failure and a long hard season for the Sixers fan base. However, we were prepared to endure the long season if the return would be worth it.
Crazy enough the NBA Draft is five days away and things are no clearer than what they were at the start of the season. There are two things clear in Philadelphia and I’m here to tell you there are plenty of falsified reports lurking about.
To start, the Sixers are without a doubt the topic of every kind of scenario surrounding the draft whether its via trade or selecting the correct player. Whether you want it to be Parker, Embiid, Wiggins, Vonleh, Exum, Randle or whoever, the fact still remains is there is no clear and concise choice at any slot especially with the injury to Joel Embiid. The Sixers ultimately control their own fate because they are led by a mad genius in Sam Hinkie. You know him as the well-mannered, soft-spoken, slam the gavel down on financial nonsense individual, who traded players and freed up major cap space for the 2014 NBA Draft. The 76ers were designed to fail last season and after a surprising 3-0 start to the season, Philly would ultimately lose 26 games in a row, en route to a 60-plus loss season.
It’s understandable that this draft is so hyped up that the Sixers and people are currently tantalizing about some trades like the franchise is in NBA 2k14. But this isn’t a game, this is the real deal. Numerous rumors will spill out and as they should. Most of the rumors are surrounding Carter-Williams and Thaddeus Young as they should. The Sixers selected Carter-Williams with the 11th pick last season and after one the best rookie season in franchise history, he was rewarded with the NBA Rookie of the Year award.
Fans and critics alike have to realize teams will make an offer for a solid young player if his current suitor is entertaining the thought of a trade. That does not mean that anything will happen and it could be a smokescreen. The lowly Sixers would have to be really enticed to trade away the ROY. Rumors swirled Friday night that the Lakers would send the No. 7 overall pick and veteran Steve Nash for the Sixers’ Carter-Williams and Thad Young. Nothing is official until the ink dries and fans can not set themselves up for utter shock if a trade is made. With Hinkie at the helm, trades should be expected. To my knowledge, rumors are about 20 percent truth and 80 percent disinformation.
Surely, the Sixers have plans in place, just in case things fall out of whack or if something rapidly falls in the teams favor. However, jumping the gun with rumor after rumor or report after report is not healthy and will probably lead to sky rocketing blood pressure levels. Everyone needs to breathe very easily and relax. The Sixers still have seven draft picks and have all the cards in their hands. Now, other variables may come into play regarding certain players and injuries but that comes with the territory. Sam Hinkie is the one calling the shots and I’m sure he has yet to break a sweat. He’s probably laughing at all of these rumors. Remember, Hinkie is not showing his cards to anyone, not even his family. Anything he shows at this point is a bluff.
Secondly, like previously stated, Sam Hinkie is in control! The man is very honorable in his craft and has the resume to show it. If you do not find yourself familiar with his tenure with the Houston Rockets then I suggest you look into Google. Better yet, I have already looked actively at his numbers and most notable signings. James Harden and Dwight Howard are the two most notable signings when it comes to free agency when he was still with Houston. When it comes to solid players through the draft, how about a solid role player in Chandler Parsons that Hinkie found in the second-round. The guy knows what he is doing even if others have no idea of the perplexities of his mind when it comes to trades or player signings. Bottom line, it works!
Now, realize the Sixers are vastly different from the shape of the Houston Rockets, but with time and patience the team will be on the rise once again. Last season it was nothing more than a rocky D-League squad that was constructed to fill the record books with losses. Hinkie put together a horrendous team in order to give the 76ers the best chance at this superstar laden draft. The old saying goes, you have to walk before you crawl and so on. Hinkie’s team right now is a baby and must learn to crawl before it can walk. The team and franchise itself is still in the beginning stages but being the new guy in the room that Hinkie is it is very hard for the fans who are used to coaches wearing emotions on their sleeves to hold grasps to.
Fans should realize that no matter what rumor comes about, or whatever unclaimed sources says that Lebron is on his way to Phily, at the end of the day, Sam Hinkie has the final call. That means he has the right to entertain whatever comes his way and its just the way it is. After all, he did trade Jrue Holiday and nobody saw that coming. Things will start to take shape and soon in the next five days we will have much more answers than questions. At least, that is the way it should be, In Philadelphia the fans always want to know as much as possible when it comes to the state of the franchise and honestly Hinkie has his own right to say as little or as much as possible.