IN HINKIE I QUESTION

Posted by: Jeff McMenamin
07/29/13 1:55 pm EST

062713_hinkie-sam_600With the Eagles officially opening up practice to their fans at a packed Lincoln Financial Field yesterday, the summer for the Sixers in Philadelphia will go as it usually does, as team irrelevant.

As critics and media personalities might argue that this under-the-radar style is the best thing for the organization and that it adds to Sam Hinkie’s “genius” GM style, I for one am not there with you.

I’m as skeptical as I’ve ever been to be a Sixers reporter and fan, and there’s no reason why anyone should be otherwise.

I’m not saying that there’s no hope for this franchise and that the moves which were taken this offseason will further drive the organization into the ground, but I do think it’s time for fans to wake up and smell the coffee and to think about some serious issues facing the franchise in the future. A simple slip-up at any point could be devastating enough to cause irreparable damage.

After the jump, I’ll discuss what issues will pose the biggest problems to the teams rebuilding process…


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A BRIGHT FUTURE (SOONER THAN YOU THINK)

Posted by: Jake Fischer
07/27/13 9:11 am EST

76ersmantraLogoeditedOver the past several weeks, everyone in Philadunkia nation has been discussing how dreadful the Philadelphia 76ers will be on the court next season.  After all, they don’t even have a coach yet, Michael Carter-Williams will most likely average at least 4 turnovers per game and the team’s best three point threat is arguably Spencer Hawes.

Yikes.

But, instead of just brushing it aside and saying, “Yeah, they’re going to suck, but they’re going to be so fun to watch in two-three years,” why don’t we take a look and actually try to predict what this team will look like on the court by 2015-2016.

Based on several reoccurring themes in General Manager Sam Hinkie’s press conferences, his draft picks and offseason acquisitions, we actually can make an educated guess on the rough foundation and style of play Hinkie is envisioning for the Sixers once this rebuilding process starts to win some regular season games.


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PHILADUNKIA 4on4

Posted by: Philadunkia
07/24/13 11:47 am EST

76erscrystalballIt’s time for another edition of Philadunkia 4on4…

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 key questions that came out of yesterday’s press conference.  Included in this edition are opinions on when to bring back Noel, the lack of a head coach and the Royce White situation.

   
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A DIFFERENT APPROACH

Posted by: Steve Toll
07/23/13 10:14 am EST

Every summer NBA free agency is filled with good deals and bad deals.  Unfortunately, 76ers fans were witness to a catastrophe of epic proportions last summer (Bynum), that will be felt for years to come.

Shortly after being appointed the new General manager of the Sixers, Sam Hinkie chose a direction for this franchise nad laid out a plan for this off-season.  I vehemently disagree with how he is going about things.

In a later piece, I’ll delve into the topic of how difficult it is for very bad teams to turn into championship contenders.  Today, we’re going to take a leap of faith and assume that players gravitate towards the money in this world and for now I’ll look at this off-season after the Jrue trade, MCW’s selection and the moves that should have been made post-2013 Draft to make the 76ers relevant instead of a team that is 5 years from potentially becoming a winning basketball team.


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FROM OPSL TO ROSTER SPOT

Posted by: Alex Gorge
07/17/13 10:38 am EST

An eleven-hour drive, a couple days of work in Orlando, then another two-hour drive and I arrive at a rented beach house in Emerald Isle, NC for my family’s singular vacation of the year.  I’ve come to just simply label it “beach week”.

To start, the environment at this beach house is a lot different than my hotel room in Orlando for the OPSL.  For one the television only has five basic news channels.  So bye-bye All-Star game, SportsCenter, British Open and any “Fast and Furious” re-runs that may have graced the screen.  No need to shed a tear though, I have a bootleg copy of “Fast 6″ so we’re all good.

This compared to my setup in Orlando almost makes me miss the Amway Center.

But I digress, the first night at the beach for my family vacation we grill out and are forced to watch one of the many Disney movies my parents continue to bring year after year.  I oblige and before I know it, Mark Wahlberg and “Invincible” are on the screen.  I confess it was my first time seeing the Philly-centric film.

After a few minutes, I realized it’s actually a good flick.  The movie made two solid impressions on me:  all athletic scenes look 1000 times better in slow motion and playing with heart still matters in sports.  Not just in winning games, but in regards to who should actually be on the roster as well.  “Heart and effort supersede athleticism with no drive.”

Do you like it?  I just made it up.

Using that premise lets take a look at which players in Orlando should be guaranteed regular season roster spots on the Sixers and who after their performances at the OPSL will fighting to make the roster at training camp.


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BE PATIENT

Posted by: Jake Fischer
07/16/13 12:11 pm EST

Along with JK Rowling’s Casual Vacancy, Roger Ebert’s Your Movie Sucks, and a random book about LeBron leaving Cleveland, one of the books I’m reading this summer is When March Went Mad: The Game That Transformed Basketball by Seth Davis.  On page 230, after Davis brilliantly depicts Magic Johnson and Michigan State’s 1979 NCAA Finals victory over Indiana State and Larry Bird, there’s a passage that really struck me.

“He is not superstar material for the NBA,’ Joe Falls wrote in the Detroit News.  “Maybe he can grow into it.  But he isn’t there yet, and some NBA scouts wonder if he will ever get there.”

Falls wrote that about Magic Johnson before the ’79 NBA Draft.  And, as a devout 76ers follower and a writer who spent all of last week sitting courtside in press row at the Orlando Pro Summer League, I couldn’t help but think that quote could easily describe Michael Carter-Williams as a rookie as well.

Now, I’m not saying MCW is the second coming of Magic Johnson.  But, I am saying that it’s far too early to label him anything but a project with a very high ceiling.


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INTERVIEW: THADDEUS YOUNG

Posted by: Jeff McMenamin
07/15/13 1:03 pm EST

A simple phone call during the 2013 NBA Draft changed the face of the Philadelphia 76ers franchise for good when point guard Jrue Holiday was shipped to the New Orleans Pelicans for forward Nerlens Noel and a 2014 first-round pick.

Holiday was a budding star for the 76ers and the most well-known amongst fans.  He was an All-Star last season and led the team in both points and assists.  Jrue averaged career-high’s with 17.7 points and 8.0 assists per game.  His efforts were strong enough to get him an invitation to Team USA basketball mini-camp at the end of the month in Las Vegas.

With Holiday out of town, the baton is now passed to forward Thaddeus Young.

Young, the longest tenured Sixer on the teams roster, also had a strong performance last season of 14.8 points, 7.5 rebounds and 1.8 steals last season in his first full season as a starter.  He’ll have to shoulder the load for the Sixers offensively while rookie Michael Carter-Williams adjusts to his role as the teams new point guard and Noel recovers from a torn ACL.

Philadunkia scribe Jeff McMenamin had the chance to talk with Young about his reaction to the draft night trade, being the new face of the franchise, his thoughts on Andrew Bynum leaving town and what he expects from the team in the future.


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OPSL GM 5: WINNERS…FINALLY

Posted by: Jake Fischer
07/12/13 8:54 pm EST

The Sixers’ week in downtown Orlando was pretty tumultuous for the most part.  Rumors swirled about the team’s head coaching vacancy, sources confirmed and then de-confirmed and then confirmed again that the Jrue-for-Noel trade became official.  On the court, the team failed to win any of their first four games and found themselves matched up with their fellow 0-4 Brooklyn Nets in the final game of the Orlando Pro Summer League.

In a week that featured some impressive performances and very competitive games, the Sixers struggled to hold their own until the second to last day of the entire league.  On Thursday, the Sixers narrowly fell to the Orlando Magic on a long Victor Oladipo step-back two-pointer.  The Sixers again found themselves in a 1-possession game in the final minute on Friday.

This time it was different, though, as the team’s string of perimeter players carried the load offensively and Arnett Moultrie, Micheal Eric and Zeke Marshall protected the basket well down the stretch, too.


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OPSL GM 3: ANOTHER L

Posted by: Alex Gorge
07/10/13 5:18 pm EST

Despite a fast start by the 76ers on Wednesday, Oklahoma City, behind second year guard Jeremy Lamb’s 32 points, proved to be too much for the Curry & Co. and prevailed 74-62.

Game 3 was like watching two Olympic sprinters start out at an even pace, only to watch the opposing sprinter blow by you and there isn’t much you can do about it.

Most people when given the option choose to hear the good before the bad, so first let’s go over the positives from today’s game.  It was easily the best defensive performance of the week for the Sixers, allowing only 74 points and forcing 23 turnovers.  Philadunkia’s home team also out rebounded Oklahoma 30 to 27 thanks in part to the extended minutes of rookie Arsalan Kazemi.  Kazemi finished the game with 29 minutes, 6 points, 3 assists and 9 rebounds but not all of what he does reflects on the stat sheet.


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JONNY FLYNN TALKS MCW

Posted by: Jake Fischer
07/10/13 9:34 am EST

The 76ers’ coaching staff and front office knew that Michael Carter-Williams would face some steep point guard competition in the Orlando Pro Summer League.  In the team’s first game on Sunday, he was matched up against the rising Houston Rocket Patrick Beverley.

Then, in the team’s second matchup of the OPSL on Monday, MCW went up against a slew of feisty backcourt men from the Indiana Pacers. Among them were Luke Hansbrough, Orlando Johnson and another former Syracuse guard, Jonny Flynn.

Flynn, who was the 6th Overall pick in the 2009 NBA Draft by the Minnesota Timberwolves, played last season with the Australia Tigers after playing with three teams in as many seasons in the League.  Now back from his hiatus, Flynn is competing with the Pacers in Orlando and then with the Clippers in Las Vegas next week. And, while he’s trying to make a good impression on NBA scouts to try and make his own NBA roster, Flynn has definitely noticed MCW and several other Syracuse alumni playing hard and performing well in the Amway Center.


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