In 2013, the Sixers became the first NBA team to openly lose games to accumulate draft picks to rebuild for the future.
This was undoubtedly done before, but never as public as the Sixers and Sam Hinkie made it during the process years.
Well, here we are a decade later, in 2023, and the 76ers have still failed to make any real noise in the playoffs.
After another second-round exit, the question should be revisited, was “the Process” successful?
This question seems to have a different answer every year. If you were to ask this in 2019 after the Sixers took the soon-to-be champion Toronto Raptors to game 7 behind Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, and Jimmy Butler, the answer would’ve been a resounding yes.
The team accomplished its main goal: to use the lean years to stack the future team with talent.
Fast forward to the 2023 offseason; the only player left is Joel Embiid. Most of their first-round selections, Jahlil Okafor, Nerlens Noel, Markelle Fultz, and Ben Simmons, are all gone with nothing to show. The big-money players they brought in with all the open cap space, Jimmy Butler, JJ Redick, and Al Horford, are all gone with nothing to show for it. Not to mention, Tobias Harris and James Harden could also be out the door in just a couple of weeks.
Heading into the 2023-2024 season, the Sixers have Joel Embiid, and Tyrese Maxey left as the big names on the team, with James Harden’s future with the team in jeopardy.
The team is on its third coach, and rumors are swirling that the culture has never recovered from the losing ways of the past.
The current answer to whether or not the process was a success is absolutely not. The team has had a ton of front office turnover, coaching turn over, and player turnover; they have never been on the same page. They picked poorly, they spent poorly, and here they are with an aging superstar that has no clear path to being a true Finals contender in the foreseeable future.
For the Sixers to be seriously competing for a Finals in the next couple of years, Daryl Morey and the rest of the front office are going to need to make a miracle happen, and they have done nothing to make us think that they’re capable of that.
Maybe we revisit this topic next year with a different answer; who knows, but the Sixers have butchered the process.
Photo: Steven Senne/AP Photo