LL: 2011 NBA Draft, Thaddeus Young's Free Agency, NBA Lockout

Liberty Links: A daily post with links to all things pertaining to the Philadelphia Sixers

Chad Ford's third mock draft has the 76ers taking big man Markieff Morris from Kansas:

Analysis: The Sixers really need a big man, and Morris, a Philly native, is the best left on the board. Morris has a rep as a good defender, shot-blocker and rebounder -- but he also proved at Kansas this year that he can step out and hit the 3. He's a bit rawer than his brother, but he's a good get at this point in the draft.

I'd rather have  Kenneth Faried and possibly even Lucas Nogueira – both of whom Ford has going after the Sixers pick.

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Draft Express has the results from the Draft Combine. Jimmer Fredette performed surprisingly well in the agility tests, Kenneth Faried finished with 16 reps on the bench (three behind the leader), and Jordan Williams still hasn't finished his 3/4 court sprint.

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Fran Fraschilla, ESPN, breaks down Enes Kanter's NBA potential:

Kanter has always loved contact and always competed with a fiery mentality. It is a part of his basketball DNA. So, the combination of that attitude about physical play and his body type will likely keep him close to the basket most of the time. While he'll get pushed around early in his career, it shouldn't be long before the 19-year-old is dishing out as much as he is getting.

He also compares him to Al Horford. Seriously, what's not to like about Kanter? I'm still holding out hope the Sixers can trade up for him

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Speaking of trading up, it seems the Sixers' best opportunity comes with owners of the number two pick, the Minnesota Timberwolves. Chad Ford touched on the potential availablity and asking price for the number two pick in todays chat

Brandon (Phoenix, AZ)

Thoughts on the rumor of Granger going to Minny for players and the #2? I would love it only if Indy drafted Kanter then they could move George to the 3 and pick up a SG in F.A.

Chad Ford (1:31 PM)

I think it's bogus. It think that's Minnesota trying to set the bar for what they're looking for. If the Pacers did swing a deal like that, I think it would be Derrick Williams that they grabbed. He's No. 2 on virtually EVERY board.

Danny Granger and Andre Iguodala are comparable players, so if that's Minny's asking price ... what are we waiting for?! If only it were that easy.

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Kate Fagan of Deep Sixer addresses the possibilty of Thaddeus Young leaving via free agency:

I would put the likelihood that Young returns to the Sixers at 92 percent. (Let's not get carried away with that number, it's an educated guess from having conversations about the situation -- and it's fun to put a number on the accumulated knowledge of these conversations.) There is no way for me to overstate the quality of the relationship between Collins and Young. Collins considers Young one of the most impressive guys (character, listening ability, responsiveness, game, personality) he's coached. And Young respects Collins and enjoys playing for him. I'd go so far as to say Young believes in what Collins can do with this franchise and, more specifically, what Collins can do for Young's game. Young wants to return to the Sixers. And the franchise, by all accounts, plans on matching any reasonable offer sheet.

I'm on the 'let Thad walk' bandwagon, but it all depends on what a "reasonable offer sheet" is.

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Enter for a chance to meet the Sixers draft pick via Sixers.com.

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Howard Beck from the New York Times on the current lockout situation:

This is likely to be the first in a series of legal salvos as the N.B.A. and the players association try to break a 16-month stalemate. The current labor agreement, adopted in 2005, is set to expire June 30. There is little hope on either side that a lockout can be avoided.

I'd be shocked if a lockout didn't happen.

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Not Sixers-related, but every NBA fan must see the two filthy dunks Derrick Rose threw down last night.

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