That title was directed to you Doug Collins.
Bravo! Sam Hinkie, you are an absolute genius. It is unfortunate that the 2005 - 2012 Jimmy Carter peanut administration dug such a beautiful basketball city 100 miles under the ground, and the only way for revival is to hop on the back of superhero Hinkie, but I'm pumped as hell.
Sam Hinkie's metaphorical and literal balls grew with every consecutive pick he made last night.
Nerlens Noel out last season? Ha, watch this everybody, not only am I going to take one guy who aint stepping on the court next year, I'm taking a guy in the lottery who may not step on the court for 2 years, while hoodwinking the Magic out of their dignity.
On a serious note: this is how the modern NBA forces you to be. The fact of the matter is is that as long as Lebron James, Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony are playing in their primes (which for KD it will be a little while longer than Lebron and Melo), and the Spurs have living, breathing basketball players, the NBA finals and playoffs aren't going to change that much. Meaning, no matter what happened last night, even if we got Wiggins or Parker, we were not winning the championship next year, or the year after, and most likely the year after that. So if Hinkie - my new Messiah and Savior - thought Embiid was the best player in the draft, which is the general consensus among most analysts, God bless him for picking him.
Back to the Doug Collins era, which I'm using as an umbrella term to pretty much include all of the Sixers' team since the departure of Iverson. There are several types of mediocre in the NBA. The Pacers, for example were pretty mediocre while Paul George was developing, and honestly, in the Western Conference, I'd say they still would be considered pretty mediocre. But they were mediocre with a developing core and a 7 footer in Roy Hibbert, who - at the very least - is more than effective just by standing beneath the rim and utilizing his size.
The Sixers were not that kind of mediocre. They didn't have a 7 foot developing center with a boat load of young talent like George and Stephenson and Hill developing. They were a team that had reached their maximum potential - with Thad and Evan plateauing - and perhaps a single exception in Jrue Holiday, who I still think could be a fantastic point guard on the right team. The Sixers were stuck in pitfall so deep that the only way that they could possibly have been saved was by blowing up the entire team - literally, blowing up. Everyone knew that, fans (well, smart fans), players, administration, analysts, fake analysts like Jalen Rose and Bill Simmons. The Sixers were so screwed I honestly considered arguing that signing JOSH SMITH would save their franchise...that's how bad they were.
In comes Hinkie: the basketball version of Taken's Liam Neeson. Effin stuff up left and right, not afraid to blow an entire franchise up for a few years.
And its beautiful. As a fan of the game of the basketball, I hate it. I want to see talent out on the court at the Wells Fargo Center. Going through another year of tanking (if they don't sign free agents at least) is going to be dreadful. I want to see Exum, Smart, Randle, Aaron Gordon, even Lavine out there for the Sixers next season.
And in a world where previous management didn't screw up a franchise so bad into a never ending vortex of mediocrity, I might have been able to see that next year. If the Sixers didn't take Turner, if the Bynum thing never happened, if Doug Collins knew how to coach in the modern NBA (these aren't explicit faults of anyone, mind you), we might have had a team that could have benefited more than drafting a center who probably won't play at all next year. We damn well might have taken Exum, or Smart, or Randle, or Gordon. And Im sure they would take us right back to before: mediocrity.
You see, on most other teams, like the Magic, who have Oladipo, or the Cavs, who have Irving, or the Bucks, who have the freak greek, adding any top tier draft talent will push your towards being a contender. But if you take that talent and add it to a team that functions off of MCW scoring 16 a game, you're back on the path to becoming mediocre, because your top draft pick is stuck having to play above his capabilities in the first year he's in the league.
So Embiid was the right pick. Saric was the right pick.
When the Sixers come out in full force in 2016, with Embiid, MCW, Noel (who I think will be an ABSOLUTE STUD, and watching him this year is like watching a rookie we drafted), perhaps Saric, and whatever Hinkie puts together, it will be beautiful.
I have no doubt this team will contend by 2018.
Beautiful job Hinkie. Last night was a big F you to Doug Collins and his administrative cronies.