After a particularly disappointing 2019-20 season that noticed them fall wanting all expectations, the Philadelphia 76ers are making some main organizational adjustments within the offseason — from the entrance workplace all the best way right down to the roster. 

The primary main transfer was made shortly after the Sixers’ season got here to an finish by the hands of the rival Boston Celtics when the group determined to half methods with head coach Brett Brown. Over the course of his seven seasons in Philadelphia, Brown took the workforce from the basement to competition, however in the end could not get them excessive. The 76ers are actually within the midst of a seek for a brand new head coach, led by normal supervisor Elton Model. 

Who they may choose as Brown’s successor is simply one of many many questions looming massive over the Sixers this offseason. Here is a have a look at 4 of essentially the most urgent. 

1. Who will likely be their subsequent head coach? 

For the primary time since 2013, the Sixers are out there for a brand new head coach. Whoever is finally employed will inherit a particularly proficient but seemingly ill-fitting roster, and can enter dealing with speedy expectations — one thing that wasn’t the case when Brown was employed. 

Whereas we do not but know who the following coach of the Sixers will likely be, we do know who it will not be. Tom Thibodeau is off the market as is Steve Nash. Each have been employed by the Knicks and Nets, respectively. It additionally will not be Villianova head coach Jay Wright, who launched a press release saying that he wasn’t a candidate for the place regardless of rampant hypothesis. 

Even with these coaches now not within the combine, there isn’t any scarcity of certified candidates for Philadelphia to contemplate, together with Clippers assistant Tyronn Lue and Raptors assistant Adrian Griffin. The Sixers will probably take their time in the case of deciding on Brown’s successor because the magnitude of the choice cannot be overstated. Whoever is chosen will likely be tasked with setting the tone for a complete new period of Sixers basketball, and main them someplace they have not been since 2001: the NBA Finals. 

2. Will the entrance workplace bear any adjustments? 

Brett Brown was the autumn man, and he wasn’t innocent within the Sixers’ struggles. Nonetheless, Philadelphia’s entrance workplace ought to shoulder a considerable amount of the blame. The entrance workplace noticed the path the league was trending in, with an growing emphasis being positioned on floor-spacing and dynamic guard play, after which it constructed a workforce that was the exact opposite of that fashionable paradigm.  

In free company, as a substitute of pursuing gamers who complement their two finest gamers in Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons, the Sixers blew the financial institution on two gamers in Tobias Harris and Al Horford who aren’t able to persistently producing offense and do not make life simpler for Embiid or Simmons, and simply usually do not elevate the ceiling of the workforce a lot, if in any respect.

Given the failures of the entrance workplace, the job safety of these making the personnel choices for the workforce must be known as into query. Model is secure, for now, as possession has mainly tasked him with cleansing up the mess that he helped to create, however what about these straight below him? Government vp of basketball operations Alex Rucker and assistant normal supervisor Ned Cohen are holdovers from the Bryan Colangelo period, and at this level it is truthful to marvel if both ought to stay with the franchise transferring ahead. 

Throughout a press convention following Brown’s dismissal, Model stated that he can be evaluating the entrance workplace over the offseason and that he can be seeking to strengthen the workforce’s mind belief. What precisely will come out of Model’s analysis stays to be seen. 

“We under-performed. I felt it was time for a brand new voice, a brand new perspective,” Model stated. “We’ll start a seek for a brand new head coach instantly. I am going to even be conducting an analysis of the entrance workplace and that infrastructure. … I really feel like we have to strengthen our group from prime to backside. That begins with the entrance workplace additionally, balancing out our strengths with analytics and technique with extra basketball minds.”

This can be a little bit of a imprecise quote from Model. Will he be seeking to substitute the likes of Cohen and Rucker? To enhance them? We’ll discover out finally, nevertheless it positive looks like a change of some type is so as. 

3. Can Simmons overcome damage points? 

Ben Simmons had a brutal 2019-20 season by way of damage points. Simmons missed the whole lot of the postseason as he underwent surgical procedure on his left knee. Simmons probably would have additionally missed the playoffs had they began in April like they have been initially scheduled, as he was sidelined indefinitely with a again damage at that cut-off date. Knee and again points aren’t to be taken calmly, and thus it is truthful to marvel simply how wholesome Simmons will likely be by the point subsequent season rolls round. It is also truthful to marvel how these damage points will impression Simmons’ capability to place in work on his sport over the offseason. 

At his finest, Simmons is a nightly triple-double menace and among the best defensive gamers in your entire league, and the Sixers will want him to be at that degree — and obtainable — if they will attain their ceiling as a workforce. The Sixers have some huge cash invested in him transferring ahead, and thus their success is tied to his continued enchancment. The hope for the Sixers is that SImmons will be capable to hit the bottom operating below a brand new coach subsequent season. 

Talking of the brand new coach, it will likely be extraordinarily attention-grabbing to see how whoever the Sixers rent decides to make use of Simmons. Brown used Simmons as the first ball-handler for many of his tenure with the workforce, however he experimented with utilizing him off ball at occasions over the previous couple of seasons. Whoever does get the gig can have choices in the case of Simmons, and maybe a brand new voice will assist him unlock one other degree of his sport.  

4. Will they commerce Horford?

The Al Horford experiment did not work for Philadelphia. That was evident to anybody who watched the workforce this season. Horford would not match properly alongside the workforce’s two finest gamers in Embiid and Simmons, and in flip he struggled to search out methods to make a constructive impression. 

The primary challenge is that Horford’s talent set on the offensive finish is redundant with Embiid and Simmons. Horford is at his finest when he is working both from the elbow or the low block. He’s very comfy with creating attractiveness for himself and others from these areas. The issue with that’s Embiid and Simmons are additionally each most comfy in these areas, particularly on the low block, the place Embiid does a fair proportion of his harm, and the place Simmons is usually relegated because of his incapability to area the ground along with his shot. Thus, Horford has been compelled to spend so much of time on the perimeter, the place he is restricted, and never particularly efficient.

Horford might probably work as a backup heart, however the Sixers are paying him solely an excessive amount of for him to be relegated to a reserve position, and so a commerce appears probably, even inevitable. Rumors already surfaced throughout the season that the Sixers would look to flip Horford for some capturing over the offseason, and that may make sense because the Sixers might definitely use some enhanced floor-spacing round Embiid and Simmons. 

The issue for Philadelphia is that discovering a commerce associate for Horford will likely be simpler stated than completed, particularly if the workforce is seeking to safe some capturing in return. Ground-spacing is at a premium within the NBA right this moment, whereas there is not a lot of a marketplace for conventional massive males on the flawed facet of 30 years previous (Horford is 34), particularly ones who nonetheless have three years and over $80 million remaining on their present contract. If the Sixers had signed Horford to a two-year deal, transferring on after a single season would have been a lot simpler. As a substitute, they signed him to a four-year deal, and now there’s nearly no likelihood that they’re going to get good worth in return in a deal even when they can discover an suitor. After how poorly he performed within the postseason (7.0 factors, 7.3 rebounds in 32.3 minutes per sport), the Sixers will nearly definitely should throw in an extra asset — or two — to get one other franchise to tackle the rest of Horford’s deal.

So, will the Sixers transfer Horford? That is to be decided, however they’re definitely going to strive. 


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