Sam Hinkie continues to implement his plan to build the Sixers up.
The Sixers were one of the more active teams on Thursday as we approached the NBA trade deadline at 3 PM. Sam Hinkie wanted to take the next step in his long-term process to build a contender. I talked with Spike Eskin from SportsRadio 94WIP to get some perspective on how he believes the Sixers are positioning themselves for the future after Thursday’s trades.
Entering the season the Sixers had three players on their roster that were viewed as the more seasoned ones in their fountain of youth. Evan Turner, Spencer Hawes, and Thaddeus Young were viewed as expendable pieces for an organization that was clearly looking towards the future as opposed to competing right now. Turner and Hawes were dealt on Thursday.
There were many rumors that the Sixers would be able to get a first round draft pick for Turner. But one of the things Eskin observed as Thursday’s trade deadline came and went was that the value of first round picks seems to be higher than Turner’s value was even in a career year for Turner.
Turner was bound to be traded by the Sixers on
Thursday. It just took longer than expected.
While the rumors were circulating, after the deadline, Eskin began to be skeptical of the validity of such rumors.
“They’re fun for the internet and fun for discussion but the fact is that Sam Hinkie isn’t telling anyone what the offers are or who he’s talking to so if you’re hearing rumors what that generally is is an agent trying to create value for his client,” Eskin added.
That left the Sixers to package Lavoy Allen with Turner to acquire veteran small forward Danny Granger from the Indiana Pacers. Now while Eskin believes the Sixers will buy out Granger’s contract and in all likelihood Granger will not play a game for the Sixers, the trade was more about moving Evan Turner whose contract is set to expire in the summer.
“I think it was basically about the fact that they have no interest in re-signing Evan Turner,” Eskin said.
Spencer Hawes tenure as a Sixer has come and gone.
That left the Sixers with Thaddeus Young. The one trade asset they still have on the roster and of the three, Young was the only one under contract past this season. While his name was still being thrown around in rumors, Eskin believes the chances of Young getting traded on draft night are higher than they ever were on Thursday.
“I think they could use him for a pick, I think they could use him to move up, I think people are more willing to trade first round picks when they know what pick it is,” Eskin said.
Now while the Sixers are positioning themselves for a big 2014 NBA Draft, the important thing is that they draft well and don’t remain at the bottom of the NBA for years to come. Hinkie’s plan goes against what prior ownership and members of the front office have tried but one thing’s for certain, Hinkie’s trying to build a contender and not just a playoff team that will win at least 40 games every season.
“It says something about ownership,” Eskin said. “They’re willing to put a team on the court that is barely even a team in a lot of respects and that says a lot about ownership that they trust Hinkie.”