By THE LUNG Staff Writer
“Trust The Process,” has become the rallying cry of the Philadelphia 76ers and their long-suffering fans. They haven’t won a title since 1983, when Hall of Famers Julius Erving and Moses Malone were roaming the court.
The last time the Sixers played in an NBA Finals was 2001, where they were throttled by the Los Angeles Lakers led by Shaquille O’neal and Kobe Bryant. The team, led by polarizing superstar Allen Iverson and solid players with a lunch-pail mentality, were beloved by the Philly faithful.
The Sixers have been one of the worst teams in the league since. They’ve accumulated just four winning seasons in the last 15. In 2013, they hired Sam Hinkie as general manager. “The Process” officially began.
Hinkie made a bevy of moves during the 2013 Draft, drafting point guard Michael Carter-Williams and trading All-Star Jrue Holiday for injured center Nerlens Noel of Kentucky. Hinkie then persuaded Brett Brown of the San Antonio Spurs to leave and coach the team.
The Sixers finished with a 19-63 record that season, but Carter-Williams won the Rookie of the Year Award and all signs were pointing up.
Hinkie then began making moves deemed insane, launching a trend of acquiring players- some mediocre, some with expiring contracts, and some who cringed at the thought of wearing a Sixers uniform- in hopes of landing as many draft picks as possible.
Hinkie was blatantly, in the short term, making them worse. The team only won 18 and 10 games the next two seasons. The Sixers became the laughingstock of the league.
After the Sixers hired Jerry Colangelo as chairman of basketball operations, Hinkie resigned, leaving behind a 13-page letter explaining his decision.
According to Jake Fischer of Sports Illustrated, “The Sixers acquired, owned the rights to, or signed 99 players during Hinkie’s time in Philadelphia.” That is an unimaginable figure. However, several of the players have shown the potential to become perennial All-Stars.
One is center Joel Embiid who averaged an astounding 20.2 points in 24 minutes per game. Rookie Dario Saric and Robert Covington are other players making a positive impact. Also, first overall pick Ben Simmons, who is yet to play, can help elevate Philly to the next level.
In the 2015-16 season, the 76ers won a total of 10 games. In January alone, they won 11. This team is on the rise. Trust the Process.
all stats courtesy of espn.com. image courtesy of google images.