Has Sixers Sam Hinkie Hustled The NBA?

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Mar 7, 2015; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia 76ers center

Nerlens Noel

(left) and center

Joel Embiid

(right) share a laugh during warm ups before a game against the Atlanta Hawks at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Embiid and Noel and Trades, oh my!

The 2014 NBA Draft found the Sixers once more falling short of the NBA top pick in draft despite a horrible season.   In what will be a theme, the Sixers found that they were picking third in essentially a three player draft, and the third man was a big center by the name of Joel Embiid.    Similar to Noel the previous year, Embiid was drafted early despite an injury – one to his foot.  And similar to Noel, the hope was that after a year of being benched, he would be ready to play NBA basketball.  Was Embiid worth it?  If he regains health, his timing aligns very well with the timing of the Sixers rebuilding plan.

The Sixers also picked up the rights to Croatian Dario Saric.  While extremely talented, he is committed to the European league for two year.   So while other teams walked on by, Hinkie stopped and shopped.   So two draft picks and nothing to show for it in 2014.  But the team did pick up KJ McDaniels early in that second round.    Much like MCW the year before, McDaniels surprised everyone by playing well.    But both MCW and McDaniels had trouble in the turnovers department, and left some offense on the table with their shooting %.   Each had skills worthy of the NBA, but not worthy of the Sixers.   On a team with so little success, the rebuild is very strict on tolerable parameters.  This Sixers team was an NBA worst in turnovers.  So, despite their NBA success, both found themselves traded.

Next: And the next pick of the NBA draft