Sixers Hire Scientist to Head Performance R&D Department

The Sixers have hired a scientist.

Today, the 76ers announced the team had hired Dr. David T. Martin, a doctor who has worked in Australian cycling for 20 years, for a new position overseeing sports science. Martin will hold the title of Director of Performance Research and Development with the Sixers.

“We have made many investments – adding staff and integrating outside experts, partnering with pioneers in sports science and technology, and adjusting our day-to-day training, practice and recovery plans,” Sixers GM Sam Hinkie said in a release. “But none like David Martin. He is a scientist. He is also a coach to some of the world’s highest performing, most resilient athletes and coaches. We are delighted to add someone of his immense talents to lead and grow our efforts.” Read more »

Report: Sixers to Pay Pelicans $3 Million for Breaking NBA Rules

sixers-logoThe Sixers hired Sam Hinkie in May 2013, but The Process really didn’t start until the NBA Draft the next month. That night, Hinkie traded Jrue Holiday to the New Orleans Pelicans. At the time, it came as a shock: Holiday was expected to be the team’s point guard for years.

The haul, it turned out, was pretty good: The Sixers got the sixth pick that season (Nerlens Noel) and another first rounder in 2014. The Sixers turned that first-rounder into Dario Saric, two second-round picks and also got the Orlando Magic to waive the pick the Sixers owed them sometime in the future. Jrue Holiday has played just 74 games over two seasons in New Orleans, missing time in both seasons due to stress fractures in his legs. He had surgery in 2014.

The Inquirer reports Holiday first suffered stress fractures in his last season in Philadelphia, and that the Sixers have to pay $3 million to New Orleans for failing to disclose the injury. A Sixers team source disputed the report. The paper’s Keith Pompey also said the Sixers were looking to get compensation from the Lakers over the Andrew Bynum trade. Read more »

There Are Two Ways for Sixers Fans to Look at the Jahlil Okafor Pick

Joel Embiid (left) and Nerlens Noel (right) | Bill Streicher, USA Today Sports. Jahlil Okafor (center), Chris Steppig, NCAA Pool, USA Today Sports

Joel Embiid (left) and Nerlens Noel (right) | Bill Streicher, USA Today Sports. Jahlil Okafor (center), Chris Steppig, NCAA Pool, USA Today Sports

Basketball writer Derek Bodner is covering the NBA draft for Philadelphia magazine at Sixers Draftland

The results of Thursday night’s NBA draft left many Sixers fans confused about the direction of the team.

It also left many fans hopeful for the team’s future.

The drafting of Jahlil Okafor — who was thought of by most to be one of the three best prospects in the draft and one of the few who could legitimately be expected to turn a franchise around — can be looked at in two ways, both of which have some merit: Read more »

Jahlil Okafor Looks to Exceed High Expectations

Duke Blue Devils center Jahlil Okafor (15) shoots the ball against Wisconsin Badgers forward Frank Kaminsky (44) during the first half in the 2015 NCAA Men's Division I Championship game at Lucas Oil Stadium on April 6, 2015, in Indianapolis.

Duke Blue Devils center Jahlil Okafor (15) shoots the ball against Wisconsin Badgers forward Frank Kaminsky (44) during the first half in the 2015 NCAA Men’s Division I Championship game at Lucas Oil Stadium on April 6, 2015, in Indianapolis.

Basketball writer Derek Bodner is covering the NBA draft for Philadelphia magazine at Sixers Draftland

“I’m familiar with winning,” Jahlil Okafor, told members of the media on Saturday during his introductory press conference.

That was kind of an understatement. Okafor’s run to the NCAA championship this past spring with Duke capped an amateur career marked by consistent excellence.

Okafor’s high school team, Whitney Young, won a Chicago Public League Championship in 2013, then followed that up with an IHSA 4A state championship in 2014.

Okafor won a gold medal at the 2012 FIBA Under-17 World Championships, where he earned MVP honors. The following year he won again, this time making the All-Tournament team on the 2013 FIBA Under-19 World Championship squad. He shot — get this — 77.2% from the field in that tournament.

So the title run with Duke — on a team that won 35 games in a 39-game season, only 2 short of the 37 win total the Sixers have compiled over the last 164 games — was just a continuation of the success that Okafor has become accustomed to.

The climb for Okafor, and the Sixers, to reach that kind of success will likely be slower than Okafor’s accustomed to. Rebuilds in the NBA take time, and the Sixers are no exception.  Read more »

Sixers Made the Best Possible Pick

Apr 6, 2015 Duke Blue Devils center Jahlil Okafor (15) drives to the basket against Wisconsin on April 6, 2015 during the NCAA Men's Division I Championship game. | Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Apr 6, 2015 Duke Blue Devils center Jahlil Okafor (15) drives to the basket against Wisconsin on April 6, 2015 during the NCAA Men’s Division I Championship game. | Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

The Sixers made the absolute best pick they could have made in taking center Jahlil Okafor with the third pick in the NBA draft.

Now, I could end this column right there, but my editors here at Phillymag.com require something like 500 words before they will actually consider giving me any payment. So the following is for the people whom I have heard bombard this selection with the zeal of a gunnery sergeant.

I hear the screams:

 What, another big man! They needed a guard! What in hell are they going to do with three big men now? Don’t they need someone to get those big men the ball? You’re telling me your starting point guard next season is Ish Smith? What was the purpose then of trading Michael Carter-Williams if you weren’t going to replace him in this year’s draft?

I ask this: As the draft evolved, what was general manager Sam Hinkie supposed to do?

Read more »

Embiid Not Expected In Summer League

USATSI_joel-embiid-940x540

Ever since the Sixers announced earlier this month that Joel Embiid‘s healing was not progressing as quickly as anticipated, the health of the Sixers potential franchise player has been at the forefront of most fans minds.

General Manager Sam Hinkie addressed Embiid’s health during his post-draft press conference today. While Hinkie was not able to provide much certainty on the big man’s future — they’re still in the process of getting opinions from various medical professionals around the world — Hinkie did say he did not expect Embiid to participate in summer league.

“I don’t see how he’d play in summer league. [Those are] not the kind of conversations we’ve been having,” Hinkie said. Read more »

Sixers Trade With Knicks, Get Future Second-Round Picks

Philadelphia 76ers general manager Sam Hinkie talks about the team's decision to draft Duke center Jahlil Okafor during an NBA basketball news conference, Friday, June 26, 2015, in Philadelphia. (Ben Mikesell/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP)

Philadelphia 76ers general manager Sam Hinkie talks about the team’s decision to draft Duke center Jahlil Okafor during an NBA basketball news conference, Friday, June 26, 2015, in Philadelphia. (Ben Mikesell/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP)

Last night the Philadelphia 76ers traded away the 35th pick in the draft, their first of five selections in the second round, to the New York Knicks. The Knicks used the pick to select Spanish big man Guillermo Hernangomez.

In exchange, the Sixers got two future second-round picks in return. A league source has informed PhillyMag that the picks the Sixers will receive are the Knicks own second round picks in 2020 and 2021.

The Knicks had already traded away their own 2nd round picks through 2019, including two, 2018 and 2019, which were already (potentially) destined to Philadelphia.(For the 2018 pick, the Sixers will get either the Knicks second-round pick or the the Clippers second-round pick that year, whichever is more favorable to the Sixers). Besides their own 2020 and 2021 2nd round picks, the Knicks also had two second-round picks from the Rockets (2017 and 2019), and a 2019 2nd round pick from Cleveland, available to trade.

As it stands, the Sixers could have the Knicks second-round pick in four consecutive years: 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021.

Read more »

Richaun Holmes, J.P. Tokoto Highlight Sixers’ Second-Round Picks

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Bowling Green’s Richaun Holmes, (left) | North Carolina’s J.P. Tokoto (right)

Basketball writer Derek Bodner is covering the NBA draft for Philadelphia magazine at Sixers Draftland

While the selection of Jahlil Okafor at No. 3 overall is far and away the biggest story to come out of the 2015 NBA draft for the Sixers, the team had five second-round selections at their disposal with which to try to find a diamond in the rough.

The Sixers started off the second round by trading the 35th pick to the New York Knicks for two future second rounders. The Knicks have already traded away all of their own second-round picks through the 2019 draft, but they do have second-round picks from Houston in 2017 and 2018, as well as a second-round pick from Cleveland in 2019, available to them.

The Sixers then selected Bowling Green senior Richaun Holmes with the 37th pick in the draft. We highlighted Holmes, the MAC’s Defensive Player of the Year, as a potential second-round option earlier in the day. Holmes has the potential to impact the game on the defensive end because of his mobility and shot-blocking ability, and he’s improved his offensive game over the past two seasons, shooting 36.1% (30-83) from three-point range over the past two years while shooting over 70% from the line each year. Read more »

The Sixers Select Jahlil Okafor With the No. 3 Pick

Jahlil Okafor (Duke) greets NBA commissioner Adam Silver after being selected as the number three overall pick in the first round of the 2015 NBA Draft at Barclays Center.

Jahlil Okafor (Duke) greets NBA commissioner Adam Silver after being selected as the number three overall pick in the first round of the 2015 NBA Draft at Barclays Center.

Basketball writer Derek Bodner is covering the NBA draft for Philadelphia magazine at Sixers Draftland

With the Lakers selecting Ohio State’s D’Angelo Russell second overall, the Sixers made the decision to go with another big man: this time Duke center Jahlil Okafor.

With Russell off the board the Sixers took their highest rated player, despite having already invested in major talent for their frontcourt over the last two seasons. Okafor will join Joel Embiid (3rd overall pick in 2014) and Nerlens Noel (6th overall in 2013) in a suddenly crowded frontcourt. Read more »

Sixers Draftland: 2015 NBA Draft Liveblog

Jahlil Okafor (Duke) greets NBA commissioner Adam Silver after being selected as the number three overall pick in the first round of the 2015 NBA Draft at Barclays Center.

Jahlil Okafor (Duke) greets NBA commissioner Adam Silver after being selected as the number three overall pick in the first round of the 2015 NBA Draft at Barclays Center.

As we continue our coverage of the 2015 NBA draft, I will be chatting with you live from the NBA draft at the Barclay’s Center. Stop on in and leave a question, or just hang out and follow along for the latest news, rumors and updates.

Live Blog Sixers Draft 2015
 


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