The 2019-20 Sixers season is perhaps the most anticipated in nearly twenty years.  With training camp just a few weeks away let’s take a walk down memory lane and look at the top ten “Not Real NBA Process Players” of all time.

To be considered for this honor, players had to meet the following criteria:

1: Had to appear in a minimum of 40 games (approximately half a season with the Sixers.  This criteria alone eliminated scores of memorable processors from Adonis Thomas (2 career Process games) to Christian Wood (17 career Process games).

2. Had to have never been, or evolved into, a competent NBA player.  This criteria was a little subjective and eliminated a solidly mediocre NBA roster of current and former NBA players.


Here is No. 10-6


5) Isaiah Canaan

The “Cannonball” arrived via Hinke’s Houston pipeline in the K.J. trade.  He was a 6’0 shoot first, second, third, fourth and fifth point guard.  In 99 career Process games, he shot a respectable 36% from three and did pretty much nothing else.  His ball-handling and playmaking skills were borderline G-League quality, and on defense, he couldn’t cover a $5 check.  But when he caught fire, which did not happen with any regularity, he could fill it up in a hurry.

Post-Process Cannon Ball bounced around between five NBA teams for a total of 119 games in 3 seasons.  In August, he signed a contract with the Shandong Gold Stars in China.

4) Nik Stauskas

Nik was a tricky decision for this list.  While some may feel he violates criteria two about “competent NBA player”, those who watched Sauce Castillo play on a regular basis know better.  Sauce arrived via trade in the summer of 2015 and there was genuine excitement throughout the fan base about the acquisition of the former lottery pick.  Nik appeared in 159 Process games over two-plus seasons.

While Nik was perhaps the greatest driveway three-point shooter in history (and there are plenty more of these videos), his NBA offensive skills too often looked like this.

Post-Process Sauce has appeared in 171 games for four teams over three seasons.  Perhaps most telling about him is that, as of this writing, he is without a team for the upcoming season.

3) Tony Wroten

Tony arrived via a trade with Memphis prior to the 2013-14 season and would appear in 110 Process games over parts of three seasons.  Like many on this list, he couldn’t shoot even a little bit (23% career from three). But Wroten was a blur of speed from end to end, and often got to the basket at will.  Sadly, when fouled he was a poor foul shooter (65%), and far too often things like this happened.

Despite these deficiencies, there seemed to be a genuine possibility that Wroten could develop into a quality player.  This changed with a torn ACL in 2014.  He never had the same explosion after the injury.

Post-Process Tony never appeared in another NBA game.  After many GLeague stops, he spent the 18-19 season playing in Estonia (YIKES), and in August signed with Anwil Wloclawek of the Polish Basketball League. 

2) JaKarr Sampson

JaKarr signed as an undrafted free agent before the 2014-15 seasons.  Over two Process years, he appeared in 121 games. JaKarr is extremely athletic and always plays with maximum effort.   Unfortunately, he had no offensive skills whatsoever and often tried things like the dunk attempt over Roy Hibbert pictured at the lead of this story.  It was from about 8 feet out and turned into an outlet pass off the backboard.

Post-Process JaKarr has bounced between the NBA (52 games) and China where he cornered the market on “Shandong” teams, playing for both the Shandong Golden Stars and Shandong Heroes.  This offseason he signed a one-year deal with the Pacers.

They must have remembered him coming closer to making that dunk.

1) Hollis Thompson

If ever there was an award based on longevity, this is it.  Over three-plus Process seasons, Hollis appeared in 256 games, nearly 100 more than any other member of this list. Hollis often led one to believe he could be a useful piece someday on a good team. Being a career 39% shooter from three tends to get people excited.  But like many of his fellow Processors, Hollis was much better on paper than in person. Despite being a very accurate three-point shooter, Hollis, and his lack of athleticism, was only able to attempt 5 threes per 36 minutes for his career.  By way of comparison, Robert Covington, who is not exactly the picture of athleticism himself, averages 8 attempts per 36. Too often, Hollis’ game, just like the rest of the Process Sixers, looked like this.

And that is how you end up playing in some faraway land with all the other players who just aren’t quite good enough.

Post-Process Hollis lasted eight more NBA games with the Pelicans.  He then spent a year in Greece, a year in the G-League, and in April signed with the Crailsheim Merlins (way cooler than the Wizards) of the German League.  


Photo: via Getty Images

 

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