Sixers coach is irrelevant

ANDREW RENNEISEN / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Nerlens Noel must be surrounded by serious players.
ANDREW RENNEISEN / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Nerlens Noel must be surrounded by serious players. (must be surrounded by serious players.)
Posted: July 26, 2013

NOT SURE WHY there seems to be such concern about the identity of the Sixers next coach. Beyond his ability to help young players with skill development, the new man will be largely irrelevant. The Sixers announced on the evening of the NBA draft that they are not trying to win in 2013-14 at least and likely for several seasons beyond that.

Not sure what the roster will look like when the season begins, but it can't look very good.

Consider that the best three-point shooter on the roster at the moment is, yes, Evan Turner. ET shot 36.5 percent from the arc last season.

How will they score? How will they keep anybody from scoring? Will anybody care? Will there be more empty seats than filled seats at the Wells Fargo Center?

The future?

I like the possibility of Nerlens Noel, but he won't matter if Sam Hinkie can't surround him with serious NBA-level players. The GM is right. Noel is a defensive game-changer. But how much will it matter if he has no help.

I am not a particularly big fan of Michael Carter-Williams. He seems like a perfectly nice young man, but, if you are point guard without an outside shot in today's NBA, you are a point guard who can be defended.

So, the Sixers, with or without a coach, are already trying to accumulate ping pong balls in the Andrew Wiggins sweepstakes.

The most exciting moment of the season, one friend reminded me, may come when Cleveland comes to WFC and the fans finally get to see Andrew Bynum play a game. He really wants to see their reaction.

I reminded him that he was making a rather large assumption, one I was not willing to make, that Bynum would actually play in that game or any game. But you have to root for it.

Really, who doesn't want to see Bynum in the house in February when the Sixers are 6-40? Think that could be a surly crowd?

So, there is something to look forward to.

By the way, I am not criticizing Hinkie. He saw a house that was collapsing and went for a teardown. He even jack-hammered the foundation. Draft night, he just began to dig a new hole.

His reality is the NBA's reality. If you don't have a superstar, you have no chance. And no matter what you hear, there are very few superstars in the NBA. In fact, I could make a case that there are just two - LeBron James and Kevin Durant. Failing to get one of them, you at least need an All Star or two. The Sixers had one in Jrue Holiday, but he simply was not going to change the balance of power.

One great player matters more in basketball than any other sport. The Sixers need to draft one of those players in 2014 or 2015 and hope they drafted one in 2013. Then, they can try to start winning.


Email: jerardd@phillynews.com

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