Posted by: Steve Toll
05/16/13 12:05 pm EST

“Hope is a dangerous thing.  Hope can drive a man insane”

That quote from Shawshank Redemption holds true for 76er fans, now more than ever.  Hope is all that is left, I guess.

Seriously, sit back and think about the Philadelphia 76ers for a moment.  Not much, right?  Maybe Sam Hinkie pulls a rabbit out of his hat, a bunch of other things go right and certain guys elevate their game in 2013-14.  Still, how much will that help?

$12,000,000 in cap space is just enough to do something stupid, but not enough to pull off a miracle.  Between Turner, J-Rich and Kwame; the 76ers have more than 25% of their roster as dead weight.  Even getting players at their true value won’t be enough to do anything but keep the team in an awkward spot.

Our man Bynum looks ready to screw the franchise for the next 5 years by being Shawshank quote incarnate.  If not Bynum, it will be some other player.  Let’s just hope that Hinkie’s advanced analytics inform him that he should avoid the players I am write about after the jump.

(WARNING: LOOK AWAY NOW if you really like OJ Mayo…)

On a per 36 minute level, Mayo is Nick Young with an extra 2.5 assists,1.3 turnovers along with bad defense.  How will everyone feel if Mayo signs a deal for $5,600,000 or more for multiple years? Exactly…..

The 3pt Shooting regressed defender: Josh Smith

Smith has regressed as a player, which has more to due with his mental/emotional state than anything else.  His offensive and defensive efficiency crept to career lows in a contract season.  The easy explanation is that he is tired of Atlanta and knows he is getting a 4yr $50 million dollar deal from someone, so why exert maximum effort this year for a team that is looking towards the future.  A bigger concern is can our next head coach reign in the 3pt Shooting Josh Smith?  Over the last 3 years, Smith is 116th in total 3pt attempts and 115th in 3pt %. There is no doubt that his game has been negatively effected by being allowed to freelance on both sides of that ball.

A 3pt shooting Josh Smith who isn’t the great defender in years past isn’t something worthwhile for a team like the 76ers.

Not even good at his specialty: Corey Brewer

Talk about a guy who is just sneaky terrible.  He literally does nothing well except getting steals, and interestingly enough, getting steals isn’t an indication of anything.  For a guy who is supposed to at least be good on defense, Brewer has been ~neutral for 3 of the past 4 years.  Much like SwaggyP this year, Brewer is basically in his prime so at least the 76ers would be getting him at the apex of his basketball career.  His last deal was 3yrs-$7.5 million total and that’s something I could (barely, assuming Ronnie Brewer isn’t already signed) live with.  Anything above that would just be embarrassing to have him locked in at.

8 more years of the same old thing: JJ Hickson

Imagine a 29 mpg guy 12pt (59 TS%) 10 reb in  who put up a robust 19.7 PER and .142 WS48 at the age of 24.  Now imagine him on a team with an absolutely D-League level roster outside of the starting 5.  If you’re still with me and I know you are, can you imagine that the Blazers were better with Hickson on the bench?  All that isn’t an issue with how I view Hickson as a player and potentially signing him.  It’s the money.  Hickson will be paid at minimum $8 million dollar a year range in year 1 of his new deal and around $11 million in year 4.  He will end up being decent enough value but his improvement curve (as with all bigs) will help to keep the 76ers right in the land of mediocre through his time here.  The 76ers might even win a playoff series in his 4th year and along with him having a career year at age 28, the 76ers will then give him a massive-ish deal that will firmly entrench the team in series of 1st rd 4vs5 match-ups until 2020.

There are a ton of guys the 76ers shouldn’t sign, but these are 4 that I feel especially strong about.  Let’s hear from everyone and find out who the team absolutely shouldn’t sign and try to be more original than “Steve Troll at GM” and Andre Iguodala.  While our voices may not be heard as loud as we’d like on issues like this, it’s still a fun exercise.  The fun will mostly be when the team ends up signing multiple guys suggested by me or readers in the comment section and we can all give a collective “WTF”.


Steve Toll is a scribe for Philadunkia.com.  You can follow him on Twitter @basementgm



11 Responses to “4 PLAYERS TO AVOID”

  1. Alex Hootan
    16. May 2013 at 14:05

    Wow You finlly make sense here. I hope he does not spend money on Smith and Hickson. For Corey Brewer, I am not sure I agree 100%. It all depends on how much he wants. He can (On the avereg) do 60% of what ET does and if we can get him for 3 year 5 mil, it wount heart.

  2. Steve Toll
    16. May 2013 at 16:10

    Come at the King


  3. Erik
    16. May 2013 at 22:06

    Avoid Nate Robinson.

    Someone is going to give him more money than he is worth thanks to his gutsy playoff performance. And the Sixers will be in the market for a backup PG. But watching that many forced shots day in and day out will be dreadful. His WS/48 has been up and down his entire career, so it’s hard to say you can be sure about anything with him. I just see more headaches with Nate Robinson than he is worth. A veteran team with a strong coaching core (like San Antonio) could probably utilize his assets. But for my money, he’s a terrible fit for Philadelphia at this time.

  4. Duane
    16. May 2013 at 22:35

    Can we please add Kendrick Perkins to this list of players to avoid? I don’t know his free agency status, but I was looking at his contribution to OKC in the playoffs and I need someone to acknowledge that he was trash in the series. Needless to say I would be very angry if he comes to the 7-6. If I was putting together a pickup game in my local area and it was regular neighborhood kids and him to choose from… I’m choosing regular people off the street over him. Your 40 year old Uncle Skip that can box out and finesse a hook shot, I’m choosing him over Kendrick Perkins. 19 min/g, 2 pts/g, 3.7 reb/g, .3 a/to ratio just isn’t cutting it. Oh, he’s signed in OKC for 3 more years? Thank God.

  5. ken
    16. May 2013 at 22:47

    if there was one person I had to choose from this list that I would hate the least signing to a contract it would be hickson a young double double machine that we can add to this young core of players

  6. Steve Toll
    17. May 2013 at 01:29


    Totally agree, Nate Rob is a luxury a team like SAS could afford. The 76ers could not.


    Perkins was laughably bad this postseason. Seems like everyone but Scotty Brooks took notice. He is likely to be amnestied this off season or traded for someone equally bad like Bargnani.


    I stand by what I wrote about Hickson, do not want

  7. Hank
    17. May 2013 at 09:59

    We should be avoiding anyone useful who isn’t young. EX: David West. By all means West is a very good player, amazingly consistent on the offensive end (ORtg of between 109-111 for the past 7 years) and has been steadily progressing on the defensive end, but at 32 years old, giving him a contract makes no sense.

  8. Adam
    17. May 2013 at 12:12

    Surprised al jefferson, paul milsap, and andrew bynum werent mentioned.

  9. Chris H.
    17. May 2013 at 15:21

    Will there be a follow-up “the Players I DO want” article? I am not saying that this one isn’t valid, cause it was a good read, but who then would you go after? I personally say stand pat, let the heat or magic take their first round pick that is owed and begin a cold summer so next year even Doug Collins can’t screw up the tanking process and we will be more likely to be a “top” 5 bad team! Just my thoughts, sorry if they are assinine. I am just tired of consistent mediocrity. They HAVE to get real bad, before they can get better.

  10. George
    17. May 2013 at 15:35

    Kinda makes me sad… While I can understand Brewer and Mayo by the argument provided, I have such a fan crush on Hickson and Smith it’s ridiculous. I can appreciate the Josh Smith flaws but still dream of the year when we could have had Smith and Iguadala and ended up with Brand. My blind fandom of him aside, Hickson improving each year playing defense, scooping up rebounds and even playing somewhat in the post baffles me as a negative. What are the free agents you would recommend? It just seems like adding a young, hustling big man to the core of Holiday and Young would be a positive. Good article though

  11. ken
    17. May 2013 at 20:42

    steve I didn’t say that I wanted him I said that if there was one of these players id hate the least if the sixers signed them it would be hickson for his age and being a double double machine.

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