Ok, pshhh I need a second like most people to digest what happened yesterday with the Sixers. If anyone asked you who the Sixers were most likely to trade on draft night you probably would have been on board with most fans and suggested Evan Turner. However this was not the case on Thursday night. The Sixers for a long time have been stuck in mediocrity. They had hopes to develop Jrue Holiday, Evan Turner and Thaddeus Young to the point where they could contend again. It all looked like it would have worked out last year when they acquired superstar talent Andrew Bynum. It was supposed to be the Sixers year, they could finally get over the hump. Of course we all know what happened with him as he didn’t play a single minute of the season.
So here we are on draft night not knowing what to expect from new Sixers general manager Sam Hinkie as he was rarely seen or heard by the public, if at all, since he arrived in Philadelphia. Well, it’s safe to say he made a huge mark on the Sixers future Thursday.
His first of many more expected moves to come was trading first time all-star Jrue Holiday away to the New Orleans Pelicans in exchange for Nerlens Noel and a top five protected lottery projected pick in 2014 (try saying that three times fast.) If everything goes according to plan the Sixers could end up with a top 3 pick and, here’s to hoping for the best, and at the highest the # 6 pick. If that’s the case then the Sixers, based on potential, have a very bright future.
With the 11th pick the Sixers selected Michael Carter Williams to essentially replace all-star Jrue Holiday. Carter-Williams has some work to do though with his shooting. Questions remain to be answered about his defense as he played in a zone at Syracuse. His assets are that he stands at 6’5″ 3/4 tall and has tremendous court vision to make him a prominent passer in the league.
Nerlens Noel suffered a torn ACL during the college basketball season which is going to keep him out of action for what figures to be at least the first half of the season. Noels’ cons are that he is a skinny guy and that he will be easily pushed around in the NBA if he doesn’t add 30 pounds or so. He is also very raw on the offensive side being limited to just dunking as his biggest skill. His positives are that he is a tremendous rim protector and very athletic. If he makes a full recovery Noel could prove to be a force in the league, if properly nurtured through this injury and is properly developed.
Next years draft is supposed to be the next best class since the 04′ class which produced prominent stars LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Carmelo Anthony and Chris Bosh. There are a good amount of highly talented prospects expected to come out in next years draft. One of these guys is Andrew Wiggins. Wiggins is being compared to LeBron James and if he is anything like James then tanking the season would be worth it for any team with a first round pick next year. It also includes talents Jabari Parker, who is not far behind Wiggins, Julius Randle, Andrew Harrison, James Young and a number of other very good players who are expected to enter the draft.
As for any more moves from the Sixers nothing is known of as of right now. I would expect them to move some more pieces. When asked about Andrew Bynum and his future here in Philadelphia GM Sam Hinkie said they will evaluate the situation and plan to talk to Bynum and his agent to see what is best for both sides. It has been reported that the odds of returning to the Sixers for Bynum is slim to none but nonetheless they aren’t out of the picture yet. Take that with a grain of salt. Could the Sixers work a sign and trade deal involving Bynum? Sure, but as of right now nobody knows.