We all know what the Philadelphia 76ers are doing. Call it whatever you want – tanking, rebuilding, deconstructing, hoarding – the 76ers are openly, unabashedly and intentionally sinking to the bottom of the NBA, because GM Sam Hinkie has convinced ownership that is the fastest way to get back to the top. Hinkie has constructed a roster that is inherently non-competitive. The Sixers have the fewest first-round picks and the most undrafted free agents of any team. Their highest-paid player makes $6.6
The Sixers are a top-five League Pass option right now. Until they win a game, they’re practically must-see, just for the historical importance of it all. And then even after they win, any time they’re close is worth flipping over to, because a loss to the Sixers will have more impact on a team’s playoff chances than a win over anybody. That said, it’s got to be a bad time to be a loyal Sixer fan right now, considering both the current
When I first sat down to write this piece, I immediately knew I had a battle between the player and the coach in me. The player in me wants a high motor, energy guy that takes no prisoners and would bite their own grandmother in the neck to win. The coach/general manager side of me wants guys that compete and play the right way, partly by making their teammates better. After 20 years of coaching, I learned rather early that I
Championship contending windows in the NBA typically close a lot sooner than anyone thinks. Take the Indiana Pacers, for example. Entering last season, Indiana was considered an elite team perhaps still a year or two away from hitting its prime as a true title contender. The Pacers started out hot, became the early season championship favorites, bought into their own hype, made a couple of short-sighted trades and eventually fizzled. In the following months, Roy Hibbert went from All-Star center to meme extraordinaire,
Over the last 35 years, the Los Angeles Lakers have been the gold standard for success, not just in the NBA, but across the Big Four sports in America. That’s the big picture. Little picture? The Lakers last season set a new standard for futility: 55 losses, more than any other team in franchise history. Nearly from start to finish, the 2013-14 campaign was a disaster of injuries and ire, much of it directed at owner and basketball operations head Jim
This Throwback Thursday brought on a photo with a crop of future stars in the NBA. One at the time player at the time was already a budding superstar, a young LeBron James. Every summer for the past decade or so, James has held his traditional LeBron James Skills Academy in Las Vegas. The four day camp is only open to those who are personally invited, offering a mixture of college and high school ballers. It’s where young and talented
The Detroit Pistons are in another rebuilding phase, with longtime president Joe Dumars out and Stan Van Gundy taking over both as chief executive and coach. He inherits a roster that remains largely intact, with the addition of some much needed 3-point shooting. Brandon Jennings, Josh Smith, Andre Drummond and Greg Monroe are all back. Jennings and Smith are either untradeable or Van Gundy isn’t interested in selling low, while Monroe took the somewhat unprecedented step of spurning long-term contract offers
Since the beginning of the FIBA tournament, all the experts and their mothers expected Team USA to meet their match against Spain for the gold in the final game. Just one problem: Spain will no longer play for the gold after a shocking 65-52 loss to France on Wednesday. Despite a valiant effort from Pau Gasol, who had 17 points and eight rebounds, the rest of his team struggled mightily against France’s tough defense, anchored by center Rudy Gobert and his game-high 13 rebounds.