06/14/12 9:11 am EST
While watching NBA TV’s “The Dream Team” last night, it dawned on me that the “Round Mound of Rebound” last played for the Sixers 20-years ago. Since then, Philly has somewhat struggled filling those size 16 shoes Charles Barkley left behind, completing only eight seasons with a record of .500 or better.
In the words of Chuck, “THAT’S TURRIBLE!”
What makes it worse is that during that time frame, names like Manute Bol, ShawnBradley, Derrick Coleman, Theo Ratliff, Tim Thomas, Tyrone Hill, Toni Kukoc’s corpse, Todd MacCulloch, Dikembe Mutombo, Derrick “Heavy D” McKey, Keith “High Socks are Cool too” Van Horn, Glenn Robinson’s corpse, Samuel Dalembert, and Joe Smith have graced the various 76ers rosters at the forward/center positions.
Some provided a consistent security that was enough to get the Sixers to the playoffs and even an NBA Finals birth, but most were nothing but stop gaps simply added to provide depth and hopeful lightning in a bottle.
The lack of signing/drafting/trading for a truly prosperous big man ultimately killed the Iverson Era and set the franchise back quite some time. Now, with the taste of this year’s NBA Eastern Conference Semifinals loss fresh in the mouths of the Sixers “Brain Trust”, the need for a dominate forward/center that fits the style of basketball the Sixers want to play is essential.
We wrote last week about the shooting guard options on the free agent market. Today we will look at some of the free agnet options that can come in immediately and make an impact at the four and five spots.