Plumlee lifts Nets to 99-88 win over 76ers (Yahoo Sports)

BROOKLYN, NY - OCTOBER 20: Mason Plumlee #1 of the Brooklyn Nets dunks during the game against the Philadelphia 76ers on October 20, 2014 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. (Photo by Nat Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

NEW YORK (AP) — Mason Plumlee had 20 points and 17 rebounds to help the Brooklyn Nets beat the Philadelphia 76ers 99-88 on Monday night.


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Philadelphia 76ers vs. Brooklyn Nets 10/20/14: Video Highlights and Recap

The Brooklyn Nets looked to continue their strong preseason Monday night when they took on the Philadelphia 76ers. The Nets’ veteran roster looked to continue its early success against a young, rebuilding Sixers squad.

Watch the video for full highlights. 

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Predicting the Good, the Bad & the Ugly for the 2014-15 Philadelphia 76ers

The Philadelphia 76ers could be in for a long season, but hope that some of their young pieces can develop and begin to build towards the future. What can we expect out of Philly this year?

Marcus Hayes joins tortured Sixers fan Adam Lefkoe to predict the Good, the Bad and the Ugly for the upcoming year in the video above.

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Drew Gordon helps 76ers hold off Magic 95-84

Drew Gordon scores 16 points, outshines brother Aaron to help 76ers hold off Magic 95-84

      
 

 

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Drew Gordon helps 76ers hold off Magic 95-84 (Yahoo Sports)

ALLENTOWN, PA - OCTOBER 18: Casper Ware #17 of the Philadelphia 76ers goes to the basket against the Orlando Magic on October 18, 2014 at the PPL Center in Allentown, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)

ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) — Philadelphia’s Drew Gordon scored 16 points Saturday night, getting the better of younger brother Aaron as the 76ers held off the Orlando Magic 95-84.


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Brother of 76ers’ Joel Embiid dies in Africa

76ers center Joel Embiid’s young brother has died in Africa. No cause was disclosed.

      
 

 

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Boston Celtics vs. Philadelphia 76ers 10/16/14: Video Highlights and Recap

Two of the NBA‘s youngest teams squared off on Thursday night when the Boston Celtics faced the Philadelphia 76ers. Both the Celtics and Sixers were eager to improve on last year’s disappointing results, and the preseason provided valuable experience for their myriad young players.

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Younger brother of 76ers Embiid dies in Africa (Yahoo Sports)

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Arthur Embiid, the younger brother of Philadelphia 76ers rookie center Joel Embiid, died Thursday in Africa.

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The Problem with Philadelphia 76ers Pursuing Michael Carter-Williams Trade

Even though Michael Carter-Williams is coming off a season in which he won Rookie of the Year for the Philadelphia 76ers, his spot in the future plans of the rebuilding organization isn’t exactly secure. While he’s filled with upside and could develop into a star point guard down the road, the Sixers are apparently trying to strike while the iron is hot. 

According to Grantland’s Zach Lowe, Philadelphia attempted to find a deal for Carter-Williams during the 2014 NBA draft, and general manager Sam Hinkie may well end up pursuing that route at least one more time: 

They tried hard during the draft, but they couldn’t draw the trove they envisioned or guarantee that the player they wanted with an acquired pick would be there, per several league sources. Expect Philly to repeat the exercise. It’s not a shot at Carter-Williams, or even a signal that the Sixers are dying to trade him. He may well end up a long-term cog in Philly.

The team knows point guard is the most replaceable position in the league today, and it will seek out any deal that adds to its stockpile of high-value draft picks.

Whether the Sixers should deal the reigning ROY is another issue in and of itself, but let’s assume they can continue stockpiling talent, working toward future success and disavowing any notion of competing in the present. While it may seem to some as though trading Carter-Williams is akin to dooming the franchise to a perpetual rebuild, that doesn’t have to be the case. 

Hinkie is just taking his strategy to an extreme. Rather than attempting a quick turnaround that gets Philadelphia into the playoffs as a low seed, he’s not settling for anything less than a team brimming over with top-notch players, even if he’s potentially putting the fanbase through years of futility in order to get there. 

It’s risky, but it could work. As Mike Sielski illuminated in a January column for The Inquirer, the strategy in Philadelphia is all about shooting for those stars, both literally and metaphorically: 

Nevertheless, Hinkie remains confident that the Noel trade will prove a smart one. He’s willing to bank that a 19-year-old can recover from knee surgery and develop into an elite center. And if he doesn’t, well, in Hinkie‘s mind, one failed draft pick won’t destroy a franchise, especially one in the Sixers’ state, just as they have nothing to lose by signing a series of John Does and seeing whether any of them might turn out to be a newly earthed diamond.

‘Nerlens,’ Hinkie said, ‘is indicative of what we’re doing here,’ and that means taking chances on players who can become superstars. It means ignoring the bunt sign and swinging for the fence at every pitch.

Isn’t that what’s happening here, too? Why settle for the reigning Rookie of the Year when you can potentially get even more by removing him from the roster?

So again, let’s assume that trading Carter-Williams is an advantageous strategy. Even if that’s the case, there’s one major problem with the team attempting to find a new home for his immense basketball talents, not all of which manifested themselves during his first go-round in the Association. 

The team knows point guard is the most replaceable position in the league today,” Lowe wrote in that excerpt given in its entirety above. 

While that’s true, it doesn’t prevent many franchises from being satisfied with their starter at the 1. Point guards may be replaceable due to the sheer depth of talent at the league’s deepest position, but how many organizations are actually willing to give up their current starter? 

Carter-Williams checked in as the No. 18 point guard in the league last season, based solely on his 2013-14 production. So while it doesn’t necessarily mean there are 17 floor generals more valuable than him on the open market, it does give a ballpark estimate for his worth at the position. 

The next step in finding a deal revolves around isolating the teams that aren’t satisfied with their current point guard situation. By my count, there are nine. 

The Brooklyn Nets have a potential All-Star running the show for them in Deron Williams, but his contract situation is quite problematic. He’s an albatross for the next few years, preventing the Eastern Conference playoff contender from making any big moves, and the Nets would almost assuredly jump at any opportunity to remove him from the books while getting back a quality package in return. The Minnesota Timberwolves may be in a similar boat with Ricky Rubio, simply because the two sides have had trouble coming to terms on a contract extension. 

Then we have the Dallas Mavericks, whose three-headed monster of Jameer Nelson, Devin Harris and Raymond Felton is a passable option when there’s so much talent surrounding it in the rotation. The Detroit Pistons and Brandon Jennings haven’t exactly been a match made in heaven, and both the Houston Rockets and Indiana Pacers could use a better creator at point guard. Patrick Beverley and George Hill are high-quality defenders, but they’re very one-dimensional players. 

Beyond that, the Los Angeles Lakers don’t have their point guard of the future on the roster, as Jeremy Lin has limited upside and Steve Nash is on the brink of retirement. The Miami Heat would surely love to upgrade from Mario Chalmers and Norris Cole, though the organization has also been remarkably high on Shabazz Napier. 

Finally, there’s the New York Knicks, who have an underrated Jose Calderon running the point in the present but still need to find the heir apparent, preferably one with some star power. 

Those nine teams are the only ones Philadelphia should bother contacting if Hinkie is truly sold on finding a trade. He’ll surely do his due diligence and reach out to the other organizations, hoping against hope that one is willing to add a second high-quality point guard and meet a solid asking price, but his best bets come from the aforementioned group. 

So the first problem is the limited market, due primarily to the same depth at the point guard position that makes it easier to find replacements. However, the second issue is even more troublesome. 

Which of those teams actually has something tempting enough to offer that they can pry the reigning Rookie of the Year from Philadelphia’s clutches, however loose the current grip may be? 

The Nets can offer up Williams, counting on the Sixers using their loads of cap space to absorb his monstrous contract. But what use would his new squad have for an aging floor general with a huge contract who often seems to be made of glass? By the time Philadelphia is ready to compete, there’s no guarantee Williams is anything more than a replacement-level point guard. 

In addition, there are no draft picks to tempt Hinkie with. Brooklyn already owes its 2016 and 2018 first-round picks to the Boston Celtics, and due to the Ted Stepien Rule, teams are prohibited from trading future first-rounders in back-to-back years.

So, how much use would the Sixers have for a 2020 first-round pick? Probably close to none, and that’s the earliest one they could get from the Nets. 

The Knicks are in the same boat, as are the Lakers, Rockets, Heat and Timberwolves. Los Angeles could at least offer Houston’s current first-round pick, but it’s a lottery-protected one, and there isn’t much else to give up. You’re still looking at an earliest unprotected first-round pick of 2019 for the Lakers, 2018 for the Knicks and 2017 for the Rockets, Heat and Wolves. 

Additionally, no member of that quintet has high-upside prospects it would be willing to part with for Carter-Williams. Julius Randle has to be considered off the table, New York and Houston don’t have many high-upside but unproven players and Minnesota just intentionally acquired a bevy of young players to test out during its own rebuild. The Heat have a shallow roster and can’t afford to part with any key pieces.

Strike all five off the list of options, which has now dwindled to only three teams—the Mavericks, Pistons and Pacers. Which of those teams can make a realistic offer?

All three have devalued draft picks because they’re going to be in the playoff hunt, so it all depends on what’s meant by “any deal that adds to its stockpile of high-value draft picks.” Something tells me that selections in the tail end of the lottery aren’t going to cut it, nor will a collection of anything even later in the proceedings. 

Carter-Williams may have earned his prestigious award in part due to the overall lack of elite rookies, but he still displayed plenty of promise while running the show in his first year removed from Syracuse. He has quite a bit of value to the Sixers, and there’s no reason for them to part ways unless there’s a mind-altering haul coming back in return. 

There’s already a limited number of teams that would show legitimate interest in trading for Carter-Williams, and those that might come calling don’t have much to offer. Unless the Sixers drop their estimates of the point guard’s worth, we’re left with two sides whose expectations and desires in a trade are inevitably separated by a yawning chasm. 

As it stands, Philadelphia may be able to take its pick from a selection of second-round picks, first-rounders that won’t be conveyed for at least three years and middling prospects who won’t do much to change the direction of the franchise or at least accelerate the rebuild.

It’s not hard to see the problem here. 

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Anthony, Knicks beat 76ers 84-77 in preseason (Yahoo Sports)

SYRACUSE, NY - OCTOBER 14: Carmelo Anthony #7 of the New York Knicks drives to the basket past Luc Richard Mbah a Moute #12 of the Philadelphia 76ers during a preseason game at the Carrier Dome on October 14, 2014 in Syracuse, New York. (Photo by Rich Barnes/Getty Images)

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) — Carmelo Anthony scored 17 points in a successful return to his college home, and the New York Knicks beat the Philadelphia 76ers 84-77 in a preseason game on Tuesday night.


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