The Philadelphia 76ers rolled the dice last off-season by giving up several quality assets for Andrew Bynum who missed the entire year due to injury. With Bynum a free agent this summer, the Sixers enter a critical summer in which they must make up for last off-season’s botched deal.
Philadelphia 76ers (34-48 last year)
2012-13 Season Summary:
In the biggest backfiring move since Happy Gilmore’s failed hockey bet with the hot golf chick, the Philadelphia 76ers trading Andre Iguodala, Nikola Vucevic, and Moe Harkless for Andrew Bynum last off-season will go down as one of the worst trades ever made by an NBA team. At the time it seemed like a reasonable deal but Bynum was damaged goods and didn’t appear in a single game this season due to nagging knee problems. Meanwhile, Iggy played at his usual high level, Vucevic developed into a double-double guy, and Harkless showed promise. Oh, and Philly still owes a protected first round pick because of that trade. (76ers fans can now repeatedly slam a car door on their head until they lose consciousness.)
The depleted Sixers really didn’t stand much of a chance without Bynum. They finished 14 games under five hundred (yet were still just four games out of the playoff picture in the weak Eastern Conference) as the team lacked any real pop on the offensive end, finishing dead last in the league in scoring. Head coach Doug Collins stepped down after three seasons in the City of Brotherly Love.
There were a couple of positives to take out of the season, Jrue Holiday, Evan Turner, and Thaddeus Young continue to make strides in their game but none of them are ready to be “the guy” on a playoff contender. Holiday could get to that point in another year or two while Turner and Young appear destined to be solid role players for the remainder of their careers.
2013-14 Projected Depth Chart:
C: Spencer Hawes/Lavoy Allen/*Kwame Brown
PF: Thaddeus Young/Arnett Moultrie
SF: Evan Turner
SG: Jason Richardson
PG: Jrue Holiday
NBA Free Agents:
C-Andrew Bynum (UFA)
SG-Nick Young (UFA)
SF-Dorell Wright (UFA)
SF-Damien Wilkins (UFA)
PG-Royal Ivey (UFA)
G-Charles Jenkins (UFA)
SG-Justin Holiday (UFA)
*C-Kwame Brown (PO)
2013-14 Team Salary: approximately $46.2 million
1. Size: With Bynum sidelined, Spencer Hawes plugged the hole at the five spot this past season and did a decent job but by no means is he a real intimidating low post presence. The Philadelphia 76ers also used the undersized Lavoy Allen at the five quite a bit but need to find another low post scoring threat especially since starting power forward Thaddeus Young doesn’t fit the mold of a prototypical four man.
2. Wing Depth: With Nick Young, Dorell Wright, and Damien Wilkins all free agents, Turner and Jason Richardson are the only wing players under contract for next season and Richardson is coming off a season ending injury so you never know how he will respond to that recovery. Philly needs to add some scoring options off the bench and at least one shooter to that group.
3. Back-up Point Guard: Philly used guys like Jeremy Pargo, Royal Ivey, Shelvin Mack, Charles Jenkins, and Maalik Wayns to spell Holiday last season but none of those guys truly answered the call as a long-term backup point guard.
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David Kay is a senior feature NBA Draft, NBA, and college basketball writer for the Sports Bank. He also heads up the college basketball and Walter Football.com material at Walter Football.com and is a former contributor at The Washington Times Communities. David has appeared on numerous national radio programs spanning from Cleveland to New Orleans to Honolulu. He also had the most accurate 2011 NBA Mock Draft and the most accurate 2012 NBA Mock Draft on the internet (Yup, repeat champ… #humblebrag.)
You can follow him on Twitter at David_Kmiecik.Powered by Sidelines Follow paulmbanks