There's a word that has been thrown around ever since Sam Hinkie touched down in the city of brotherly love - a word that I don't think half the people who use it actually understand what it means.
Over the past month, that word and Sam Hinkie became somewhat synonymous, giving everything this now beacon-of hope-of-a-man does a sort of "moneyball" feel.
And ever since "analytics" became the new word to describe the Sixers, basketball jargon and philosophy has changed in Philly. Role players have suddenly become "assets". Players with reasonable contracts and solid, useful skill sets - think Asik - have suddenly become "too good" for the Sixers, or players that don't fit the Sixer type.
So what exactly is the Sixer's type? Many articles and analysts would suggest young, athletic players with potential, like Nerlans Noel and MCW, and players who specialize in a certain statistic (rebounding, WS/48). This, my friend, is what we now call analytics. And the goal of analytics summates with the young superstar in the making Andre Wiggins.
However, while the concept of analytics, or obtaining young, athletic, potential filled "assets", sometimes with certain specialities, is cool and all, I don't think it is the be all end all of Sam Hinkie's plan for the Sixers.
After all, James Harden wasn't the superstar he is now when the Rockets traded for him. Statistically, he was an above average player that could shoot the three well. Statistically, Harden wasn't a superstar....at the time. It was only after Hinkie acquired Harden in a masterful trade that he emerged as a top 10 player in the league, lethal from pretty much any point on the floor.
The point of all this is that Philadelphia has immediately - and maybe prematurely - labeled Hinkie as purely a "numbers" guy, at least until Wiggins comes along. Most Sixers' fans think Hinkie will spend his time looking at an excel sheet, keying in on advanced statistics that we don't know about to find "assets" to help whomever we draft next year.
What I'm suggesting is that we don't label Hinkie so quickly as the Jonah Hill of the NBA. Because while Hinkie prides himself on being secretive, I'm pretty sure everyone is in agreement that the draft is only the beginning of his moves. Am I saying that we won't tank? No, of course not. Tanking is definitely a real and plausible option. But as Hinkie has shown us in the past, we never know what's in his bag of tricks. I wouldn't be surprised one bit if we trade these newly acquired first round picks, and a a few of our "assets" (if we even have any...thad?), for this year's Harden.
I'm ready to get #Hinkied