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Will Sam Hinkie and the Sixers Actually Tank?

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Tank. Tank. Tankadelphia.


There's been a lot of talk here and other places about the Sixers forgoing this season in favor of the highest lottery pick they can get in the 2014 NBA Draft. Sam Hinkie deciding to trade Jrue Holiday for two draft picks with his first move as GM seems to support that logic. Popular opinion (and I'll write about this soon) suggests that Thaddeus Young, Evan Turner, and Spencer Hawes will be the next ones out the door as Hinkie lets Andrew Bynum sign elsewhere.

But will he let it happen? 2014 is undoubtedly the best draft class in recent memory and, with the New Orleans pick, the Sixers should have two great picks regardless of how they play out the rest of the offseason.

So I looked at what the Rockets have done since Hinkie became a Vice President in 2007. In those six years, they never finished with a record under .500. Not one year. No tanking. Tankless. It's tough to look at that and say He Won't Tank, because he wasn't the General Manager. Now maybe you blame that on the owners or maybe you blame that on Daryl Morey, but for whatever number of reasons, the Rockets did not tank when Sam Hinkie was there.

That's why I'm not so sure the Sixers will sign a bunch of cripples and cartons of coconut water this offseason so they can go 10-72 this year. There's just no precedent for Sam having done it or believing in it. If he can find value on the free agent market, I believe he'll make the move, even if it's at the expense of a few wins next season. I said as much to Spike Eskin on WIP last night, though I'm still expecting the Sixers to be pretty bad.

It's about assets. Losing doesn't guarantee the top pick, so I don't buy into Sam completely going for a Full Tank. He'll set the Sixers up for the future. If that means finishing with the 7th pick and a value-added free agent this year, then that's what it is. The offense he'll run will guarantee a couple more wins than Doug Collins' did anyway.

I'm on TEAMHINKIE regardless. Guide me, oh great Hinkie.