On Christmas Day as I sat and watched some of the NBA’s best (as well as the Lakers) play entertaining and at times very solid basketball, I began to wonder what Sam Hinkie and Sixers’ fans would have asked Ol’ St. Nick to put under the Christmas tree this year.
I realize that Sam and Philadunkia nation may not have had the exact same wish list for Santa, but I believe the 76ers Christmas list I came up with will satisfy both parties.
After the jump, 10 “gifts” Hinkie and Sixers fans alike would wish to have found under the tree yesterday morning.
1. All around better play from the East – Philadelphia currently sits 3rd to last in the Eastern Conference at 8-20, but the tanking is far from over. The 76ers have been awful since their unlikely 3-0 start to the season; however, they are still only 3 games worse than the 4th place Toronto Raptors. Apparently the Tank Bus is much more crowded than anyone thought before the season. Miami and Indiana have been the only two relevant teams in the East, that’s it. If the rest of the East can find some pride and gut out a few wins, it will help the Sixers have better chances in this year’s super draft.
2. A 1st round pick for Thaddeus Young- Obviously this is asking a lot, however, only one GM needs to be convinced that Young is the piece missing to make their team a contender. So I’m saying there’s a chance. From 76’s perspective, this would only move them down on the competitive scale and give them better chances with the lottery balls.
3. 40% from 3PT for Michael Carter-Williams – The rookie from Syracuse has been more than anyone expected this year. In fact, and rightly so at this point, Carter-Williams has to be the leading candidate for rookie of the year. Imagine if Carter-Williams started netting from three consistently, it would be terrifying for defenses! The potential for Carter-Williams goes up by the minute and this might be the single flaw in his game right now.
4. Deer Antler Extract for Nerlens Noel – Alright, this might be illegal in the NBA but Noels health is a looming problem for 76 and only the best can be hoped for. After seeing Derrick Rose and Robin Lopez go down you realize fortunes can change just that quick in this league. Noel doesn’t exactly look like a tank out there so a precaution may be necessary. Someone call Ray Lewis and ask if he knows about any 2 for 1 deal.
5. Ticket Sales at the Wells Fargo Center – With a tanking season comes tanking ticket revenue. Hinkie needs to try and get the best marketing team on the planet working for 76 (Though it still may not make a difference). Even after that it won’t be easy to sell tickets. The marketing department might need to implement a free Big Mac policy for three made 3 PT field goals from Carter-Williams. See what I’m doing here, some Big Macs on the line could cause the rookie to fix his shooting problem sooner than later. Synergy is the key word here, I know, Hinkie should hire me to the marketing department.
6. ADHD medicine for Lorenzo Brown – This rookie could be a good player in this league, he just needs to make up his mind. Brown sits and waits too long on possessions. It’s almost like Brown is trying to keep multiple options open for as long as he can even when it’s clear he needs to make one choice and go with it. Brown is the guy who goes to McDonalds with the intention of buying a Big Mac but then reassesses his entire order process upon pulling up to the drive through. Don’t go hesitate then choke and order the Filet-O-Fish, focus and go with your gut! Yes I realize that is two straight Big Mac references, I’m leaving for the Arches when I get done with this article.
7. A great 2nd round pick – A good 2nd round pick is almost better than a 1st rounder for multiple reasons. Second round picks aren’t subject to the rookie wage scale like first round selections therefore they can be signed to any contract. Take Chandler Parsons for example, fantastic draft pick by the rockets that is being way underpaid in proportion to his talent. Parsons is currently playing under a four year, 3,629,500 dollar contract. That is dirt cheap for someone of Parsons level and the 76ers need all the bargain deals they can get.
8. Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker, Marcus Smart or Julius Randle – Google them or Youtube them but these are the best players coming out of this years draft and Philadelphia needs to lay claim to one. Philadunkia nation doesn’t need to get saddled with the 6th pick and have a reason to draft someone like Dante Exum ahead of Randle (That’s one of the current projections). The 76ers have multiple picks this year and are only a few pieces away from becoming contenders in the immediate future.
9. For the Eagles to make the playoffs – Romo is out and you would think that is relieving, but in reality, it is going to put a mountain of pressure on the Eagles this week. Chip Kelly has had a tremendous first season as head coach of Philadelphia, but a loss to Kyle Orton that eliminates Philly from playoff contention would be a colossal letdown to end the season. If this were to happen you can bet Philadelphia citizens will be a lot less on board with tanking than they were beforehand.
10. Get “The Enigma” a Rubik’s Cube – It’s a fair, low cost gift but it sends a message. Turner’s game has yet to reach its potential and the journey keeps going. This is the best year of Turner,s NBA career so far but there are still noticeable problems. Turner’s three-point shooting has been reprehensible and his play inconsistent at times. I would like to think if “The Enigma” figures out the cube an epiphany will soon follow.
Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to everyone in Philadunkia Nation.
Alex Gorge is a scribe for Philadunkia. You can follow him on Twitter @apg3000.
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