Philadelphia 76ers: 10 best non-lottery first-round picks in team history

Philadelphia 76ers, Tyrese Maxey, Furkan Korkmaz Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Philadelphia 76ers, Tyrese Maxey, Furkan Korkmaz Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports /
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Philadelphia 76ers
Speedy Claxton (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images) /

Training camp hasn’t come yet and it seems like an appropriate time to do an article reflecting on the Philadelphia 76ers draft history. The idea for this article originally came from Joshua Buckhalter of Soaring Down South.

In his piece, Buckhalter wrote about the best non-lottery pick for the Atlanta Hawks. With all the first round picks the Sixers have had in recent history, it seems like a good idea to re-hash this idea with a 76ers twist to it.

This article will only include players drafted after 1985 when the draft lottery was incorporated into the NBA. If a player was traded from the Sixers on draft night they won’t be included, but if they were traded to the 76ers on draft night then they will be on this list if they are good enough.

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10. Speedy Claxton

I’ve written in the past that the Sixers shouldn’t have selected Speedy Claxton with the 20th pick in the 2001 NBA Draft. However, that doesn’t mean that he was a terrible player. He had a 10-year career while averaging 9.3 points and 4.3 assists.

The point guard played for Philly, the San Antonio Spurs, Golden State Warriors, New Orleans Hornets, and Atlanta Hawks. His career was ended due to injuries and only played in seven out of the 10 seasons he was in the NBA.

9. Maurice Harkless

Technically, Maurice Harkless never played a minute for the Philadelphia 76ers but he was on the roster until the infamous Andrew Bynum deal so he will include. In that deal, he was re-routed to the Orlando Magic in that deal and developed into a solid defensive wing in the NBA. He also has played for the Portland Trail Blazers, Los Angeles Clippers, New York Knicks, Miami Heat, and Sacramento Kings.

For his career, he’s averaged 7.0 points, 3.6 rebounds, and 1.0 steals per game. The 15th pick of the 2012 NBA Draft figures to be in the rotation for the Kings this season. If he could become an average 3-point shooter, he could have been one of the better role players in the NBA, but he never did so he’s a stop-gap starter/bench player. It should be noted that he also wasn’t the best choice at that spot in that draft.