If you've been covered in bat droppings and unable to see or hear since before the NBA Draft, first of all, I'm terribly, terribly sorry. Secondly, you probably didn't know the Sixers traded Jrue Holiday to the Nerlens Pelicans for New Orleans Noel and a 2014 first-round pick. Really! They did that! Well, new news ("noo-noos") has come from the pen of Dei Lynam -- the trade had been in place since before the draft, and it was dependent on one of three guys dropping: Nerlens Noel, Anthony Bennett, and Victor Oladipo.
That's quite a list. All three guys play different positions and all three give you very different things on a basketball court. Bennett is all offense, Noel is all defense, and Oladipo is an efficient but not breathtaking level of both. That reinforces what we already assumed -- it's about assets (BUZZ WORD - SOMEBODY JUST GOT SLIMED) and talent. Not about need or positionality. People who said otherwise were off-base.
And what's also cool is how much they liked Bennett. He's a tremendously talented player, but an equally divisive one. Kid looks like he's another curly fry away from tipping the scale and if he doesn't keep himself in shape, he could flame out faster than said curly fry. But the talent is most definitely there as an athletic big man who can stretch the floor. Hopefully he decides to play some defense with the Cavs. And hey - I had him at #1 on my Big Board because I am Sam Hinkie and you must bow to me and give me your first-born child.
Oladipo and Noel were a bit more obvious choices pre-draft. Bennett was the most likely one to slip. Good to know Hinkie was already working them phones to set this up beforehand. I'd love to hear more about how it all came about. I'll try to dig some things up when I get to Vegas Summer League next weekend.
There are also a few nice Josh Harris quotes about Sam Levinkie that I'd like to bring to your attention because obviously. Emphasis all mine.
"My first impression is he is fantastic," owner Joshua Harris said. "My first impression was we were getting a super smart, hardworking, very focused, world-class GM, and that is exactly what we got. I like to say I was playing checkers and he is playing chess. He is thinking about five moves ahead, so I am learning a lot about basketball from interacting with him."