The Six Things You’re Missing if You Aren’t Paying Attention to the Sixers: Not Last

Photo Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Photo Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

From a season high (home win against the Cavs) to a season low (shooting 30.1% while getting blown out by the lowly Bucks), the Sixers are a hard team to consistently keep up with. Sometimes, you see some signs of what years to come could bring. Sometimes, Michael Carter-Williams goes 1-13 from the floor. It’s rough. But the good news is that you don’t have to watch almost every game, because I do, and here is what you’ve missed:

1) Still not the worst, three days running:
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2) Towards the end of the Sixers’ win over the Cavaliers, the strategy seemed to be “Give the ball to Tony Wroten.” The Sixers’ website has (really awesome) animated diagrams of those last plays, which do not adequately display the reckless abandon of Wroten-ball.

3) Robert Covington, new fan favorite and the Sixers’ only real three-point threat, is still raining them down. Covington has attempted 131 three-point shots this season, and among players who have attempted that many, Covington’s 42% is sixth in the NBA.

4) After Sam Hinkie traded the rights to one person you’ve never heard of for a bunch of other stuff you’ve never heard of yesterday (more on that later), word leaked out that the L.A. Clippers are interested in Wroten. Keith Pompey reported that they were just “preliminary discussions, expressing interest,” but Wroten is committed to playing for the team whose uniform he’s wearing. “You hear about the rumors; you let the team and my agent handle that,” Wroten said. “Obviously, I’m here.”

5) Nerlens Noel’s year has been fairly shaky. On one end, he’s rebounding better, playing better in the paint, and putting up a double-double every once in a while. On the other, per John Gonzalez:

He’s taken 237 shots this season, 123 of which have come from five feet or closer. Of those, he’s hit 52.8 percent, according to That’s not great. Could be better. On shots from more than five feet, he’s made only 32 of 114. That’s 28 percent. That’s really not great. Pretty awful, actually. Could most definitely be better.

He does some things like this, though:

6) Back to that trade: Sam Hinkie traded the draft rights to some dude who came here in the deal that sent Alexey Shved to the Rockets for some cash, a player that was immediately waived, and the draft rights to some other random dude. For a more confusing look at it, here’s the relevant portion of our updated Sam Hinkie Trade Insanity Flowchart™:

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So yeah, Thad Young has become Luc Mbah a Moute, a first round pick, a second round pick, a foreigner we’ll probably never see, and a pile of cash. #togetherwebuild


11 Responses

  1. There is no 100% guarantee Hinkie’s plan will work, but I am still 100% behind it. Because of the stupid NBA system, you are either a contender or a pretender. A 45 win team is no different then a 15 win team, as it may actually be worse to be a 45 win team because you will get stuck in basketball hell.

    Of course this plan could blow up in our face (Noel doesn’t amount to much, Embiid is injury prone, we don’t win the lottery this year), but I will still take this anyday over those 40 wins teams we had with Iggy, Lou and Spencer Hawes.

    1. completely agree. people in the media or in the business who blast the strategy hinkie is utilizing right now is a dishonest moron. first of all, the sixers aren’t “tanking.” that would infer that they are intentionally losing games. they are not. they are building with a young core. this happens in every league, every year. they play as hard as every other team out there, which fluctuates night to night like every other team. albeit they have less skill, but thats ok. its a process. its not “tanking.”

      and like you say, this could fail. but its definitely worth a shot. there was no other strategy that has more of a chance of success than this one.

  2. completely agree with comment above. the POTENTIAL is outshining the garbage we have to watch now. I just wish the tickets were free. I’d gladly go watch every game I’m just not willing to pay to watch it. Do I pay to poop? no, no I don’t.

  3. yeesh. i worry about noel’s offensive game a lot. i was kind of disappointed he didnt look like anthony davis after that year off. hopefully with a long offseason, he can put on 20 pounds of muscle. athletic freak but still looks like a puppy who needs to continue growing into his body.

    as for wroten, i hope it would take at least the clippers’ first round pick to get the conversation started. i think this will be a particularly deep draft

  4. The Bucks aren’t so lowly. They have the 4th highest win total in the conference (the same amount the Cavs have).

    1. yup. and they also play defense – currently 9th in the league in OPPG. a lot of unlikely better-than-you-expect teams in the NBA, starting with atlanta. bucks are a quality opponent.

  5. On the topic of Nerlens Noel:

    His offensive game was not his strength coming into the league. Everyone knew that he was going to be a major project on that side of the ball, especially considering he is all of 20 years old and played one year of major competitive basketball. Commenter Henry is disappointed that he has not resembled Anthony Davis. Even Noel’s biggest supporters never projected him to have a ceiling anywhere close to that of Davis. Anthony Davis is a once in a decade type player, who took two full seasons before he started to resemble an All-Star on the offensive end. Noel was the best long term potential guy in an historically bad 2013 NBA draft. If he could have a future as an elite rip protector like Roy Hibbert that would be a big steal for the Sixers.

  6. That Thad Young trade was a huge win for Hinkie. The Miami 1st rounder looks like it could 14th-16th in the draft at this point. They could very easily package that with something and move into the Top 10 for a second quality pick.

    The Wolves are shopping Thad now since their season became a nightmare. I’d be shocked if they get a 1st for him.

  7. Nice to see people here in the comments are much more clued in to the sixers than jim and the rest of the media in town and nationally are. Nerlens is a 20 year old rookie, what are people expecting? and as others have noted he’s not an offensive powerhouse to begin with. Defensive wise, he has been pretty promising. I’m not surprised they are shopping Wroten. He can get to the rim and make some nice dishes but he plays too out of control most of the time. Maybe Brown can ring him in but if a team is willing to sell high I would not really miss Wroten going 1 on 5 every possesion. Can’t wait for Embiid next year and even though its the euroleague, the other guy they got Dario Saric is the real deal. The only issuses will be health and free agency when the young core of this team comes together.

    Dare i say the 76ers are the most likely team to next win a championship in Philly!

  8. I absolutely LOVE what Hinkie is doing. He has creating artificial demand for players that have been nothing up until this point. Shved was hot garbage with the Timberwolves. Somehow Brown & Co. were able to make him look like he belonged somewhere in the NBA. The Rockets somehow were confused and traded something of value for him. Shved has play in 2 games for a total of 18 minute since joining the Rockets. Then you have Brandon Davies who actually displayed some hustle and talent in his time here. He was an undrafted signing here and they managed to turn that into draft picks and cash considerations. Davies played 7 games with the Nets and was subsequently cut. Now, Wroten, who the sixers got for a 2nd round pick, is on the trading block and will bring back much more than that. Then again, he was a 1st round pick of the Grizzlies and he is only 21 years old. Could he develop into an immense talent? It’s possible. He plays hard and brings energy. The question is whether you hold him to develop into a key player in the future of this team or do you trade him while his value is at an all-time high and get potentially better pieces that could fit the system.

    Hinkie has given more hope with his style of team building–something that the other three teams in this town could learn something from. Even further proof that it’s a great idea–Dick Jerardi and his old school ilk–hate it.

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