Quick Thoughts on Okafor

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pic via NBA Twitter

Best player available, right? Sure. But the Sixers are so unlucky. Two lottery disappointments. Protected picks get kicked down the road. Embiid still hurt. Saric has incentive to stay two more years in Europe. Lakers take Russell. Can’t win.

They made the right pick, and having the closest thing to a sure thing is never bad, especially with so many question marks and unknown assets. But as badly as I want the Triple Towers to be a thing, there’s no way the Sixers keep, in the long run, Embiid, Noel and Okafor. Drafting Okafor and then the immediate reports that they were keeping him tells me that either A) it’s not looking good for Embiid or B) they’re not married to anyone, including and especially Noel – the only player supposedly a part of the rebuild to actually play in a game – and will hold an open competition for the two forward spots and move the third player. That’s disappointing, because it’s not progress– it’s asset swapping… which I suppose is the whole point of this.

Scouting report? Okafor has an impressive post game, but, well, not so good otherwise. Liberty Ballers scouting report:

Okafor struggles to contain pick-and-rolls, and despite having an amazing set of physical tools, is not yet the rim protector that he should be. But that concern has perhaps been overstated in recent months, as Karl Towns rocketed past him in mock drafts. For a player who is as skilled offensively as he is, it would be unwise to think he can’t develop abilities in other areas.

One place where he’ll need to apply that logic offensively is at the free-throw line. Okafor shot a putrid 51 percent from the line this season, a full 15 percent below what he managed from the field, which is rather incredible.

Not a bad pick. The right one. But, again, not what we wanted. Or needed.


8 Responses

  1. U-N-L-U-C-K-Y. Damn the Lakers. This kid has to come to a city that did not really want him and will only benefit if Embiid is a failure (who wants that?) At least with a guard, a position of need, I would have been comfortable even though there were downsides.

  2. Sixers are unlucky man. Fucking Lakers…..oh well i would have done the same thing,call their bluff and I don’t blame them for taking the guard. Almost wanted the Sixers to take Mudiay just so they filled that need, but i wasn’t crazy about him, and Okafor is the most NBA ready guy in the entire draft. Dude has a ceiling of tim duncan and an Al Jefferson floor and everyone is pissed he’s here, including him haha. If Embiid really is hurt, which i don’t think he really is, this might be a blessing in disguise. Another offseason of frustration and irony for philly basketball

  3. Agree theres no way they will keep all 3 big men in the long run. So basically this year will be a tryout to see who they keep…another year of waiting to put a team together. Woulda like to see them try and grab winslow as he fell, he could he the star of the draft. With the exception of anthony davis who is an athletic freak…’Big men’ are being phased out in the nba they are important in making the playoffs but not so much in winning in the playoffs..the warriors didnt start winning until they took out bogut and started iggy…spurs won the year before by starting diaw over splitter…lebron won two titles with no inside help at all. Spacing, passing and versatile defesnsive players are what win in the playoffs. Unfortunately the sixers still have a long ways to go.

    1. yep i totally agree. I still can’t complain about the pick because Okafors post game is so polished for a kid his age, maybe the most polished i’ve ever seen for a 19 year old. The big man isn’t necessarily becoming extinct, but the game is being shaped into a wing dominant, ball moving type of game.

      I think if Okafor is the guy you could still put a championship team around him, but Embiid and probably Noel have to go, just no room for all 3, especially on the court together. Maybe Noel becomes a nice defensive center off the bench. Hopefully Saric fills that Boris Diaw/Iggy role which killed both Lebron’s teams because they were athletic enough to penetrate and pass or knockdown the occasional 3, and they drew the big man away from the basket. Sucks they had to take another center, but they got probably the most sure thing in the draft.

  4. Get ready for ‘Hack-a-Okafur’ next year, as this guy shoots 51% at the free throw line. They will have to take him out in the 4th quarter until there is 2 minutes left unless they change the rule.

  5. How is it surprising when a big man’s FG % is higher than his FT%? Most of his FG’s are either dunks or lay ups. Do you know anything about basketball?

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