Apr 20 2014

The Disposable Sixers: Where Are They Now?

To say Sam Hinkie has turned the Sixers into a revolving door would be an understatement. As Gus Crawford noted a couple weeks ago – and as you learned if you stumble across this sporcle quiz – 28 players have appeared on the roster. With the season done (finally!), here’s a look at where some of the ex-Sixers ended up. Starting with…

Kendall Marshall
OK, he was never actually on the Sixers roster — he played for the 87ers — but Marshall was one of the few players who went on to do some relevant things. The former UNC guard looked like he could be a long-term backup for Michael Carter-Williams after a strong showing in Delaware, but he ended up securing a contract with the Lakers, and doing just about everything a GM could possibly ask of a D-League signee.

Though Marshall slowed down after a scoring hot start — he averaged 11.9 points, 11.5 assists and 3.0 turnovers in January – he has still looked the part of a competent backup point guard. Even his previously questionable outside shot looked good; he was 39.9 percent from downtown for the Los Angeles Lakers.

Did the Sixers miss on this one? If they were looking for a backup point guard that could help the team right away, and possibly in the long-term, then yes. Marshall was that guy. Then again, the Sixers probably let Marshall go because they didn’t want him stealing the backup point guard minutes from Tony Wroten.

Dewayne Dedmon
He was signed on two 10-day contracts and wasn’t actually that horrific, but Sergeant Hinkie of the TankTrain let him go in favor of a roster spot, opening up flexibility before the trade deadline.

Dedmon actually performed well enough to convince the Magic to pick him up for the rest of the season. So, go him. He’s one of the only players Hinkie cut that went on to get a contract on an NBA roster. Dewayne Dedmon: NBA player. It still sounds strange.

Tim Ohlbrecht
Sam Hinkie has used his Houston Rockets connection on a few occasions, the Ohlbrecht signing being one of them. The big German was picked up off of waivers on July 16, but was released prior to the start of the regular season.

Ohlbrecht ended up putting in work for the Fort Wayne Mad Ants of the NBA’s Developmental League, averaging 12.0 points and 7.0 rebounds per game on 55.4 percent shooting. While the numbers are not bad, his hopes of playing in the NBA seem to be dwindling by the day.

Mac Koshwal
Like Ohlbrecht, Koshwal was cut prior to the start of the regular season and decided to give it another go in the D-League, re-signing for the Bakersfield Jam for the third time in his career.

Solomon Alabi
After being waived on October 5, the 7-foot-1 center signed for Yulon Luxgen of Taiwan’s Super Basketball League. There, he is third in rebounds per game, averaging 13.9 along with 12.8 points and 2.1 blocks. It isn’t the first time Alabi has played overseas — he previously spent time in Greece.

Khalif Wyatt
The former A-10 player of the year was another who failed to make the grade at the 76ers after playing for the summer league squad. As Michael Levin of Liberty Ballers said at the time, a former Sixers regime may have had him on the roster simply because he was a Temple guy.

But Wyatt didn’t make the cut, and after spending a few months in China with the Guandong Tigers, he now is in the D-League. Alas, he still proved he can score by averaging 16.2 points a game with the Springfield Armor.

Vander Blue
He didn’t make it past training camp with the Sixers, and then joined Maccabi Rishon LeZion of Israel. Unfortunately for him, he was cut after a month overseas.

After his short stint in Isreal, Blue came back to the states and played for Delaware 87ers. This was before he signed a 10-day contract with the Boston Celtics. Finally an NBA chance for one of the Hinkie cuts! After three games with the Celtics, Blue went back down to the D-League and that’s where he currently plays.

Daniel Orton
The ex-Kentucky center had a few nice games with the Sixers, including a double-double against the Indiana Pacers. Despite that, he was waived and like most on this list he plays in the D-League.

Darius Johnson-Odom
He’s not the Magic Johnson-Lamar Odom we dreamed of. After a 10-day contract, he wasn’t invited back to the tank party. He has since decided that fashion will be his next port of call.

Clothing line coming with the homie zar!!! Watch out summer!!!

— Darius Johnson-Odom (@KingMe_DJ1) March 24, 2014

Gani Lawal
Another one that faced Hinkie’s chop. He now plays in Italy for Olimpia Milano.

Royce White
Royce White was drafted by the Houston Rockets back when Sam Hinkie was involved with the franchise, and The Hink gave the point forward another chance with Philly.

It didn’t work out and the former Iowa State forward was let go prior to the start of the regular season.

On March 18, the former 16th pick signed a 10-day contract with Sacramento and finally made his long-awaited NBA debut but failed to register a single statistic in his 55-second cameo. After his second 10-day contract expired he was not brought back.

James Nunnally
The last of our disposable Sixers, James Nunnally was picked up on a 10-day contract on March 17th. After impressing enough to earn a second, he didn’t secure a contract until the end of the season.

So, out of all the players the Sixers had a close look at and didn’t keep, only one of them is currently at an NBA team with a realistic chance of carving out a career as a long-term player in the league.

When Sam Hinkie raises the Larry O’Brien trophy in 2018, just remember: this team had Gani Lawal and Mac Koshwal on the books only a few years prior.

Apr 17 2014

Talking About Practice

Change is afoot.

The season is over. The playoffs are starting. The draft is nearly here. With all these big happenings, um, happening, myself, Eric Goldwein, and Anthony Calabro sat down tonight to talk some Sixers.

On the conversational docket was:

1.) The Sixers’ draft plans

2.) The possibility of the Hinkie, that modest alchemist, turning the Sixers’ growing bundle of assets into a superstar

3.) Playoff predictions

Enjoy! (And, if you don’t, at least keep quiet about it–hand to god we’ll get better at these.)

Apr 17 2014

NCAA Tournament Stock Watch: Week 3

The Sixers have five second-round picks to spend on the night of the 2014 draft thanks to Sam Hinkie’s trade-deadline flurry, and based on what happened in last year’s draft, it’s unlikely they hold onto all of them. Instead, the picks could be packaged to move back up into the late first round or acquire a young player on the cheap.

But if they do hold on, the Sixers are projected to have two top-10 picks in the second round (their own, the No. 32 pick, and Cleveland’s, the No. 39) and there’s a few prospects from the Final Four (yes, that was forever ago) who might be worth taking in that spot.

Let’s take a look at how the key player from each squad fared throughout the NCAA tournament.

Aaron Harrison, SG, Kentucky

Season averages: 13.7 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 1.9 APG, 1.1 SPG, 0.3 BPG, 1.6 TO, 42.3 FG%
NCAA Tournament: 13.2 PPG, 2.0 RPG, 0.7 APG, 1.2 SPG, 0.2 BPG, 1.7 TO, 42.4 FG% (six games)

Aaron Harrison likely earned himself a fat paycheck during the NCAA tournament.

If you like shooting guards who don’t shrink from the moment in high-pressure situations, Harrison is your cup of tea. The freshman 2-guard drilled clutch 3-pointers in three consecutive games, against Louisville, Michigan, and Wisconsin. Here’s the Michigan shot:

And here’s the clutch three against Wisconsin:

He couldn’t conjure the 3-point magic against UConn in the national championship game and on the season, he hit 62 of his 174 three-point attempts (35.6 percent), so his 15-of-30 (50 percent) shooting from downtown during the NCAA tournament was somewhat of a revelation (or fluke).

At 6-foot-5 and 210 pounds, Harrison has solid size at the 2 in the NBA, especially once he packs on a few extra pounds of muscle. Even if he’s not a great 3-point shooter, he may still be a worthy second-round pick. (According to ESPN.com’s Chad Ford, scouts and GMs have him between 25-40).

If he falls to the mid-second round, don’t rule out the Sixers taking a flyer on him.

Stock: Up

 

Frank Kaminsky, C, Wisconsin

Season averages: 13.9 PPG, 6.3 RPG, 1.3 APG, 0.7 SPG, 1.7 BPG, 1.0 TO, 52.8 FG%
NCAA Tournament: 16.4 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 1.2 APG, 0.5 SPG, 1.5 BPG, 1.0 TO, 54.8 FG% (five games)

The best and worst of Frank Kaminsky were on display during the NCAA tournament.

During the second weekend of March Madness, he scored 19 points on 8-of-11 shooting and swatted six shots in 34 minutes against Baylor in the Sweet 16, powering Wisconsin to an Elite 8 matchup against top-seeded Arizona. Kaminsky went absolutely HAM in that game, scoring 28 points on 11-of-20 shooting (including 3-of-5 from three-point range) and grabbing 11 rebounds in the one-point overtime victory.

Against Kentucky in the Final Four, however, the 7-footer was a nonfactor. He only scored eight points on 4-of-7 shooting, pulled down five boards and blocked two shots in 32 minutes. His counterparts, Julius Randle and Dakari Johnson, combined for 26 points and 12 boards in the Wildcats’ one-point win.

The 7-footer is what he is at this point: An offensively gifted prospect who is likely to struggle on defense in the NBA. With the league trending toward stretch big men — Kaminsky shot 37.8 percent from 3-point range this year — his defensive limitations might not be a death knell for his draft prospects.

After the Final Four loss, both Kaminsky and teammate Sam Dekker vowed to return to school next year, per ESPN.com’s Jeff Goodman. If he changes course, he’s likely an early- to mid-second-round pick who could serve as an intriguing complement to Nerlens Noel.

Stock: Up

 

Shabazz Napier, PG, UConn

Season averages: 18.0 PPG, 5.9 RPG, 4.9 APG, 1.8 SPG, 0.3 BPG, 2.9 TO, 42.9 FG%
NCAA Tournament: 21.2 PPG, 5.5 RPG, 4.5 APG, 2.5 SPG, 0.0 BPG, 3.5 TO, 46.3 FG% (six games)

No player did more for their draft stock during the NCAA tournament than Shabazz Napier, whose Kemba Walker-esque tear may have taken the mid-second-round candidate into the first round..

Napier kicked things off with 24 points, eight rebounds, six assists and three steals in the Huskies’ round-of-64 overtime win over St. Joe’s and never looked back.

He went off for 19 or more points in five of UConn’s six-game title run, and the one game he didn’t — the Final Four matchup against Florida — he racked up six assists and four steals while DeAndre Daniels and Ryan Boatright shouldered the offensive load.

Over the course of the tournament, he went 20-of-43 from three-point range (46.5 percent) and 87 percent from the charity stripe. Throw in his 2.5 steals per game and he posted one of the most well-rounded performances of any prospect.

Ford reported that “many scouts now see him as the fourth-best point guard in the draft, behind Dante Exum, Marcus Smart and Tyler Ennis.” At 6-1 and 180 pounds, he’s undersized for a combo guard, but if he can play the point full-time in the NBA, he’d be an intriguing late-first-round or early-second-round pick.

Stock: Soaring

 

Scottie Wilbekin, PG, Florida

Season averages: 13.1 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 3.6 APG, 1.6 SPG, 0.0 BPG, 1.7 TO, 40.2 FG%
NCAA Tournament: 14.2 PPG, 1.8 RPG, 2.6 APG, 1.6 SPG, 0.0 BPG, 1.0 TO, 43.3 FG% (five games)

Of the four prospects featured here, only Scottie Wilbekin did more harm than good to his draft stock during the NCAA tournament.

That’s not to say Wilbekin didn’t have his own share of highlights. He dropped 21 points on 9-of-15 shooting against Pittsburgh in the round of 32, and he scored nearly 40 percent of the Gators’ points (23, to be exact) in their 62-52 victory over Dayton in the Elite 8.

In Florida’s other three games, however, Wilbekin finished with a combined 27 points on 11-of-31 shooting (35.4 percent). UConn’s pesky duo of Napier and Boatright harassed him into his worst performance of the tournament in the Final Four — four points on 2-of-9 shooting, four personal fouls and three turnovers.

The senior point guard just turned 21, so it’s not as though he’s a lost cause in terms of his NBA potential. (Philly’s own Michael Carter-Williams, who declared after his sophomore season, turned 22 before the start of his rookie season.) There’s little reason to believe Wilbekin wouldn’t be available with in the latter half of the second round, however, especially given his inconsistency throughout March Madness.

Stock: Down

 

ICYMI

Week 1: Top-five prospects & Doug McDermott
Week 2: Late-lottery prospects (for the Pelicans pick)

Apr 17 2014

Season Wrap-Up: Sixers Top Heat, Because of Course

Philadelphia 76ers 100 Final
Recap | Box Score
87 Miami Heat
Thaddeus Young, PF 30 MIN | 9-17 FG | 2-2 FT | 9 REB | 2 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 20 PTS | 0Say what you want about Thad as trade bait — which he might be come draft night – this guy is a terrific player with heart and Grizzlies-level grit and grind. Wherever he plays next year, he’s going to succeed. His hustle was off the charts tonight, which is certainly a testament to his career as a Sixer.

Henry Sims, C 31 MIN | 4-7 FG | 2-2 FT | 7 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 10 PTS | -3Won’t be saying this about too many of the guys on this team, but he’s a keeper. Turns out Spencer Hawes ended up being worth something of value.

Michael Carter-Williams, PG 34 MIN | 3-10 FG | 3-4 FT | 6 REB | 4 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 12 PTS | -2He shot just 30 percent tonight — guarded by Toney Douglas most of the time — but at least they were all threes. Herb Magee will have himself quite a project this summer.

James Anderson, SG 18 MIN | 3-5 FG | 2-2 FT | 3 REB | 2 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 10 PTS | +6Not sure whether he’ll be back next year, but he’s proven he can be a serviceable role player, in moderation. He certainly did his job tonight.

Adonis Thomas, SG 5 MIN | 1-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 3 PTS | +1Thomas dislocated his finger in the first half and didn’t return. It was his first career start. Long live Adonis.

Brandon Davies, PF 19 MIN | 4-6 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 11 PTS | +16The season ended with an airballed three from him, so he gets an A. Well done, Brandon.

Jarvis Varnado, PF 16 MIN | 3-5 FG | 2-2 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 8 PTS | +13Varnado has a team option for next year, so we’ll have to see about him. I think he has the floor awareness of a piece of lint, but perhaps Hinkie/Brown see something I don’t (which is likely).

Casper Ware, PG 14 MIN | 4-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 10 PTS | +15Casper Ware embodies the spirit of this season, and there’s no other way to put it.

Elliot Williams, SG 23 MIN | 4-7 FG | 1-2 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 9 PTS | +10Elliot Williams can jump pretty high. That’s about it.

Tony Wroten, SG 22 MIN | 2-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 6 AST | 5 STL | 0 BLK | 6 TO | 4 PTS | +9Wroten is an interesting piece. The 20-year old has all the physical tools, but he is incredibly reckless. Who knows what role, if any, he’ll have next year. Anyways, he had six assists and five steals in his season finale. Not bad.

Hollis Thompson, SG 27 MIN | 1-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 3 PTS | 0Hollis ends his spectacularly Hollis-y year with the Hollis-est line ever: 3-3-3 on four shots in 27 minutes with an even +/-. He, like Sims, is a likely keeper.

Arnett Moultrie, PF DNP COACH’S DECISION MIN | FG | FT | REB | AST | STL | BLK | TO | PTS | …Thanks, Doug.

Byron Mullens, C DNP COACH’S DECISION MIN | FG | FT | REB | AST | STL | BLK | TO | PTS | The Sixers were 0-18 in games that Mullens played in. An A for you as well, Byron.

 

By the Numbers

29 - The amount of minutes allotted to Toney Douglas tonight.

Quote of the Game

“True love stories never have endings.” – Richard Bach

Tweet of the Game

Parting Shots

It was fun, everyone. Lottery night is just 34 days away. That’s when the real season starts.

Apr 12 2014

76ers hang around, fall to Bobcats 111-105

Philadelphia 76ers 105 FinalRecap | Box Score 111 Charlotte Bobcats
Thaddeus Young, PF Shot Chart 38 MIN | 8-22 FG | 0-1 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 16 PTS | -3Young scored 16 points, but wasn’t terribly efficient doing so, taking 22 shots and missing five 3-pointers. He forced mid-range jumpers and was routinely beat on the glass. Happens.

Henry Sims, C Shot Chart 26 MIN | 5-8 FG | 5-7 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 15 PTS | -3Sims’ aggression in the paint is one of his best attributes. Whether he’s battling for position down low or crashing the boards, he’s always seeking contact, and tonight that led to seven free-throw attempts. He converted most of his looks around the basket, but at times was overwhelmed defensively against Al Jefferson.

Michael Carter-Williams, PG Shot Chart 37 MIN | 7-11 FG | 9-10 FT | 7 REB | 8 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 23 PTS | -5MCW experienced success everywhere inside the arc, cashing in on midrange jumpers, attacking the rim, pushing in transition, and converting at the free throw line (9-10). Late in the second quarter he helped Philadelphia take a lead by scoring six straight, capped off with a steal and slam on the break. He was disruptive on the defensive end while flirting with a triple-double (7 rebs, 8 assists).

James Anderson, SG Shot Chart 31 MIN | 3-11 FG | 1-2 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 8 PTS | -3Anderson never got into any sort of rhythm up against Gerald Henderson, going 3-11 from the field and 1-5 from beyond the arc. His only made 3-pointer was an off-balance leaner at the end of the shot clock. Save for that impressive shot, Anderson’s contributions were limited in his 31 minutes of play.

Byron Mullens, C Shot Chart 20 MIN | 6-12 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 13 PTS | -1While he’s usually a black hole on both ends of the floor, Mullens didn’t obliterate the 76ers’ efforts offensively or defensively. In fact, for stretches, he did the opposite, sparking a 76ers run in the second quarter with seven consecutive points. He was also active on the glass, collecting four offensive boards and seven total.

By the numbers: 9. The Charlotte Bobcats had nine blocks to the Sixers’ one.

Tweet of the night:

No picks and no playoffs for the Knicks.

Parting shots: We didn’t get to see the Michael Carter-Williams-Kemba Walker duel we all wanted. Instead we got MCW vs. Luke Ridnour. Less exciting, but I guess it got the job done.

Apr 12 2014

Sixers Lose Again, Three Games To Go

Philadelphia 76ers 95 Final

Recap | Box Score

117 Memphis Grizzlies
Thaddeus Young, PF Shot Chart 27 MIN | 8-17 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 18 PTS | -20Thad had a tough matchup in Zach Randolph but held his own for the most part. At one point in the third quarter he passed up an open three and got called for the charge on his way to the basket as he crashed into Z-Bo. As the veteran leader on this team, we don’t expect moments like that from Young, but often it’s hard to remember that he is only 25.

Michael Carter-Williams, PG Shot Chart 27 MIN | 4-13 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 5 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 8 PTS | -14Carter-Williams got off to a hot start, attacking the rim with consistency, but he struggled when Tony Allen came in to guard him. It will be interesting to see his development against elite interior defenses such as the Grizzlies’.

Elliot Williams, SG Shot Chart 29 MIN | 6-11 FG | 0-1 FT | 2 REB | 4 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 13 PTS | -20Much like Hollis Thompson and Henry Sims, Williams is playing well enough to warrant another contract. The athletic guard has a lot of question marks surrounding his game and consistency, but he was solid tonight with 13 points and four assists.

Tony Wroten, SG Shot Chart 21 MIN | 6-14 FG | 6-8 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 18 PTS | -12Much like MCW, Wroten tried taking advantage of Mike Conley by using his athleticism. Though his three wasn’t falling (0-3), he went to the line eight times and finished with 18 points on 14 field goal attempts against his former team.

By the Numbers:

  • 7 – Career 3-pointers for Marc Gasol. One of them came tonight.
  • - Games remaining. Final countdown.

Tweet of the Game:

Parting Shots:

The Sixers kept it close in the first half against a Grizzlies team that needed the win to get into the playoffs; so, half a moral victory. Three games until this season is over. 75 days until the draft.

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