As a reminder, this Philadunkia question and answer series is “loosely based” on ESPN.com’s highly successful, NBA related series of posts titled “5on5”. Our version of this genre of posts will ask 4 Philadunkia scribes to answer 4 topical, hot button questions about our Philadelphia 76ers.
Now you’re probably asking, “Why not simply stick with the “5on5″ format that ESPN.com uses?”
Well as any great hoops coach will tell you — playing 4on4 is the best way to truly learn the game of basketball.
After the jump four Philadunkia scribes will address four hot button 76ers issues.
1. Brett Brown seems to have settled on his starting five, at least to start the season. Assuming that Carter-Williams – Anderson – Turner – Young – Hawes is the default starting five, what player do you think will have the most impact off of the bench this season, and why?
Jeff McMenamin: Tony Wroten will lead the bench mob, but that’s not saying much. He’s quick, physical, can get to the rack and plays with high energy, which are all things you want to see from a player coming off the bench. In all honesty I think he deserves to start, but he’s going to have to take one for the team and enjoy his minutes with the second unit for now. I think he has the potential to average 12 points and six assists off the bench, which remains to be seen from his starting counter-part MCW.
C. Smith: It will be Tony Wroten, although the recent addition of Daniel Orton…KIDDING. Wroten will likely get the most minutes of any of the reserves currently on the Sixers’ roster, so if he can slow down a little and play under control, I think he could have a positive impact. I like his offensive game, defense and aggressive mindset a great deal, but Brown wants smart players on the floor who play efficiently and Wroten has some work to do in this area. I should also note that I think if Wroten plays a little more under control and makes better decisions, that we could see him moved into the starting lineup.
Michael Kaskey-Blomain: Tony Wroten will have the biggest off-bench impact. Brett Brown loves Wroten’s energy and aggression, especially on the defensive end, and he will give him every chance to be out on the floor. Brown has said that he feels that Wroten can play multiple positions, even comparing him to a Tyreke Evans-type player. Wroten will likely play both on and off the ball, and while he obviously needs to improve on the offensive end, his defensive tenacity, energy, and quickness will allow him to have a big impact in games for the Sixers this season.
Steve Toll: I see only 1 answer, Lavoy Allen. He is the best player on the bench, for whatever it’s worth.
2. Bovada Las Vegas set the Sixers over/under win total at 17 for the season. Is this an accurate estimate? If not, how many games do you see them winning this season?
Jeff McMenamin: That’s a pretty accurate estimate. I’d say depending on if Turner, Hawes or Thad stick around that number could be even lower. I’m going to say 15 wins on the year, but if any of those three are traded 8-10 wins.
C. Smith: I think the over/under number that Vegas has set for the Sixers is very fair. Unfortunately when I look at the schedule, I think there is a real chance the Sixers could come out of the gate 1-16 and stretch that record to 2-26. If that happens, this team will quit. I believe they will then hold Noel out for the entire season as well as trade Turner and Hawes. All of that will induce a real nose dive from there. So if I was a betting man, which I am (But there is no betting at Bushwood.), I would take the under — 10 wins.
Michael Kaskey-Blomain: An over/under of 17 seems like an accurate estimation of the Sixers win total this season. The team has some talent, enough at least not to be historically bad (I don’t expect them to break their own record of 9 total wins in an 82 game season), but not much more. The Sixers may be able to compete in a lot of games, but the lack of experience and superstar play, both crucial aspects to late-game success, will end up costing them plenty of contests. I expect them to win anywhere from 13 to 20 games on the season, which will hopefully land them in prime lottery position.
Steve Toll: This isn’t the worst team in the history of the NBA but it will end with the worst record ever because the league as a whole is much better at the bottom than in years past. Somewhere between 5 and 8 wins.
3. Royce White did not fly with the team to Spain, but has since stated that he does plan to travel with the team, and was with them on their flight to Charlotte on Wednesday. How many games do you think he will suit up for, and what kind of on-court impact do you think Royce will have with the Sixers this season.
Jeff McMenamin: I think White will have a very marginal impact for the Sixers, especially if Arnett Moultrie comes back and is effective. Sure, White has a good relationship with the team now and has the chance to see a lot of minutes, but to me he just isn’t in good enough basketball shape and I’m not very sure his desire to be is there. He’ll play in 50 games, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him with the 87ers by the end of the season.
C. Smith: 40 games & minimal impact — but I hope I am wrong because I originally liked this acquisition a lot. Yes, White has shown some nice flashes and he’s a big that could help the Sixers on the interior, but I am not ready to give him a roster spot. This guy had all summer to get his game and his fitness level up to par for a fresh start here in Philadelphia and he failed miserably. He looks over weight and his skills look very rusty. To be honest, I am very disappointed. Outside of Thad, the Sixers’ bigs are turrible (Barkley voice here). White should have seen this situation as a golden opportunity to get his NBA career on track. He should have come to town in the best shape of his life and on point with his game and just kicked ass. He didn’t, so I question his desire to play the game — #Bewell-intheD-league.
Michael Kaskey-Blomain: Unless injury issues impede, I see Royce playing about 50 games for the squad this season. He is notoriously opposed to long flights, but the proximity to many of the Sixers away games should allow him to travel on many of the trips. The Sixers frontline is extremely thin, so they could use any contributions White can deliver. Coach Brown has repeatedly emphasized White’s upside. If he can get into decent playing shape, which is a big if, White could be a serviceable big off the bench.
Steve Toll: Royce will suit up and play every game as long as he is not physically injured. The 76ers have so little depth, he should and has to play.
4. Who do you expect to lead the Sixers in scoring this season, and how many ppg. will they average?
Jeff McMenamin: I think it’s pretty much a no-brainer to say Evan Turner, although what if he’s traded? Does that make this answer incorrect? With Jrue Holiday gone, Turner will have the ball in his hands a lot more and has the chance to post his best season for the Sixers in a contract year. All signs point to Turner increasing his scoring to the 18-20 ppg range. Thaddeus Young will come close at around 16 ppg, but then I believe you’ll see a big drop-off among the rest of the team.
C. Smith: I expect it will be Evan Turner. From what we have seen in the preseason, “The Enigma” will have the rock in his hands a lot this year and that will allow him to put up something around 19 ppg. If he ever eliminates the spinning, fade away jumper from his game and adds 3 more FTAs per night, his scoring average could soar even higher. But he won’t fix those items because that would show growth in his game and Turner has not gotten better since he has been here. Still if he can hit for 19 per night, his trade value would increase significantly.
Michael Kaskey-Blomain: Evan Turner will lead the Sixers in scoring this season. Turner’s points per game, attempts per game, and usage rater have gone up in each of his three professional seasons, and I expect that trend to continue this season. With no Holiday or Iguodala to defer to, the ball will be in Turner’s hand quite often, and if preseason play is any indication, then he will be looking to put up some points. Many feel that Turner is at his best with the ball in his hands, and with very few other offensive options, Tuner will basically be given the green-light to make things happen for the team on the offensive end. He’s led the team in scoring and shot attempts throughout the preseason, and with Thaddeus Young not known for being extremely assertive on the offensive end, Turner will likely continue to shoulder the scoring load for the Sixers.
Steve Toll: Thaddeus Young will average 16.6 ppg this year, up from 14.8 last year.
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