May 14, 2013 The Philadelphia 76ers introduced their new general manager Sam Hinkie to the press. Hinkie had been an assistant general manager with the Houston Rockets previously, and was a key part in orchestrating the James Harden trade that sent him to Houston. Hinkie is most known for being an analytics guy. A new trend in sports has emerged in large part due to Billy Beane of the Oakland A’s having a good amount of success using analytics to craft a competitive product on the field. Hinkie at his opening press conference stressed player development as being a major factor in creating a competitive team, and at his press conference on May 14, 2013, he said, “I think player development would be important to me and I think it is critical in today's NBA.” It is great to say player development is important, but you also must show the fans that you are actually facilitating the development of players on your team.
The Philadelphia 76ers are polar opposites of the Golden State Warriors. While the Warriors have chased a record number of wins, the Sixers appear destined for 70 losses. They are on pace to have a worse record than they had the first two seasons that Sam Hinkie was general manager, and this raises a big red flag. That big red flag is being raised due to the lack of player development. The current Sixer roster is comprised arguably of only three or four true NBA players. By true NBA players I mean players who truly belong in the league based on their talent. Players such as Jahlil Okafor, Nerlens Noel, Jerami Grant, and Robert Covington are true NBA players who have shown improvement since they joined the Sixers, but in three years it is hard to find many other viable players who have developed much.
So there are much more examples of players who did not develop under Sam Hinkie’s watch, as opposed to players who have developed. Here is a list of the top 15 worst Sixers players in recent memory, who simply did not develop much as players on the Sixers under Sam Hinkie’s leadership.
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15 Kendall Marshall
Kendall Marshall was an outstanding point guard while at the University of North Carolina. He has always been a good passer, and has had success setting up his teammates. He has been a journeyman so far in his young NBA career. The 2015-16 season has been his first with the Sixers, and he has mainly rode the bench. When he gets on the floor, he makes most seven footers look fast, often playing the game at an extremely slow pace. His jump shot is very flat, and sometimes he will shoot three’s in which the opposing team already knows it’s not going to go in. Kendall averages almost four points per games and almost three assists per game this season.
14 Darius Morris
Darius Morris is ranked where he is ranked because although he only played 12 games for the Sixers, he did not play all that bad when he was playing for the Los Angeles Lakers. When on the Sixers, Morris had to fight for playing time with Michael Carter-Williams, who eventually won the NBA rookie of the year that season. That made minutes difficult for Darius Morris to attain. Morris when on the court averaged a modest seven points per game, but only three assists a game. Coach Brett Brown only allotted 16 minutes per game to Darius Morris, which made it very difficult for him to ever develop after an average first season for the Lakers.
13 Brandon Davies
Brandon Davies was an undrafted free agent out of BYU before making the Sixers out of camp during the 2013-14 NBA season. He was not the most talented basketball player, but he played his heart out while on the court. During the 2014-15 NBA season, Davies was traded to the Nets, which upset coach Brett Brown greatly. Davies was always going at full speed while on the court. He was a decent rebounder, but he made questionable decisions sometimes while on the court. Davies even attempted threes in games a couple times, which was befuddling. Davies during the 2014-15 season for the Sixers averaged six points and close to four rebounds per game.
12 Lorenzo Brown
Lorenzo Brown started his NBA career with the 76ers, but has since also suited up for the Minnesota Timberwolves and Phoenix Suns. He seemed to be a great D league player, but that momentum did not carry over when he joined the Sixers. Since he played the point guard position, it was difficult for Brown to ever get playing time while playing behind Michael Carter-Williams. Brett Brown only gave Lorenzo Brown nine minutes per game, which made it hard for him to put up good numbers while with the Sixers. Lorenzo Brown averaged two points, and almost two assists in twenty-six games for the 76ers.
11 Daniel Orton
Daniel Orton did not put up outlandish statistics while playing at Kentucky under John Calipari, but he was still selected late in the first round by the Orlando Magic. While at Kentucky he played with eventual NBA stars John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins. Unfortunately Orton did not achieve anywhere near the success that Wall and Cousins have had, and has been a bit of a disappointment. Orton only played 22 games for the Sixers. He did get to start four games for the Sixers, but only averaged 11 minutes per game. Orton averaged three points and three rebounds per game while playing for the Sixers during the 2013-14 NBA season.
10 Casper Ware
Casper Ware was a really small guy standing at five feet ten inches, and came from Long Beach State, a small school. Casper Ware only managed to play nine games in the NBA, and they were all as a part of the Philadelphia 76ers. Ware did shoot over 50% from the field though. Like many guards already mentioned, there was a log jam at the point guard position, and the 76ers were not going to risk stunting the development of Michael Carter-Williams to let undrafted point guards get massive minutes. Casper Ware averaged five points and one assist while playing for the Sixers in the 2013-14 NBA season.
9 Malcolm Lee
Malcolm Lee played three seasons in the NBA. Lee's first two seasons he played for the Minnesota Timberwolves, and in his last season he played for the Philadelphia 76ers. During Lee’s time with the 76ers, he only played in one game with the team. In that one game he only managed to register two minutes on the court. Malcolm Lee is mainly ranked this high due to his time while he played for the Timberwolves, where in his second season with the team shot a modest 33% from three. The 2014-15 NBA season, and his one game with the 76ers was his last game played in the NBA.
8 Jarvis Varnado
Jarvis Varnado played two seasons in the NBA for four different teams. The last team that he played for was the Philadelphia 76ers during the 2013-14 NBA season. Varnado was a rim protector, and averaged over a block a game while on the 76ers. This is most likely why so many teams had interest in Varnado, and having a big man that can protect the paint is very valuable for a team to possess. Varnado only scored four points a game, but shot the ball at sixty percent. Nerlens Noel got a majority of the minutes as the team's rim protector, so Varnado only got to play around 14 minutes a game.
7 James Nunnally
James Nunnally began the 2013-14 NBA season on the Atlanta Hawks, but only played four games for the Hawks. Eventually he found himself suiting up for the Philadelphia 76ers briefly. Nunnally only played nine games for the team, and did not contribute much while on the floor. He was a decent three point shooter, but not good enough to get constant playing team while with the Sixers. He played the small forward position, which the Sixers were severely thin at talent wise during the 2013-14 season. James Nunnally only averaged three points per game. He clearly was not developed much at all, and could not help the Sixers when they were desperate for talent on the wing.
6 Christian Wood
Christian Wood was a basketball god while playing for the running rebels of UNLV. Many experts expected Wood to be a first round draft pick before the start of the 2014-15-college basketball season. Wood ended up going undrafted, but got an invite to play on the Sixers summer league team. He eventually made the team, but has been moving up and down between playing for the Sixers and the Sixers D League affiliate the Delaware 87ers. Wood has struggled to find playing time for the Sixers so far this season. If wood can not find playing time on this lackluster Sixer team it is hard to see him developing much with this team. He is averaging three points and two rebounds per game this season.
5 Larry Drew III
Larry Drew III is the son of the former coach in the NBA Larry Drew. He did not play a very long time for the Sixers, but was not very productive during his time with the team. The Sixers at the time were injury plagued at the point guard position. Larry Drew III played a total of 12 games for the team that year, and was signed to two 10-day contracts during the year. He even started a game for the team due to the Sixers being so depleted at guard at the time. Drew III only averaged close to four points and four assists a game for the team in the 2014-15 NBA season.
4 Malcolm Thomas
Malcolm Thomas played for five teams in three seasons in the NBA. His final season was with the Philadelphia 76ers during the 2014-15 NBA season. Although Thomas played for five different teams, he never contributed much to any of the teams he played on. His best production came with the 76ers, where he received 12 minutes of playing time a game in the seventeen games that he suited up for the team. He only managed to score two points a game while with the Sixers which was also his career high. He never got close to becoming a great NBA player like his college teammate Kawhi Leonard.
3 Adonis Thomas
Adonis Thomas played for two NBA teams during his lone year in the NBA. He played four games for the Orlando Magic, and two games for the Philadelphia 76ers. The production that Thomas produced in the D league gave him the opportunity to play in the NBA, but he could not prove that he belonged in the league once he got up to the next level. In his two games with the Sixers he managed to only score seven points. After his two game appearances with the Sixers, Thomas never played in the NBA again.
2 Drew Gordon
Drew Gordon has recently been in the headlines for being upset at Shaq for not fairly judging his brother Aaron Gordon in the dunk contest. As far as his NBA career, he made nowhere near the amount of highlights that his brother Aaron currently performs for the Orlando Magic. Gordon was an undrafted free agent picked up by the 76ers, but he only managed to play nine games for the team. Those nine games were the only games he ever played in the NBA, and now he plays overseas. Drew Gordon averaged two points and two rebounds per game during the 2014-15 NBA season.
1 Darius Johnson Odom
Darius Johnson Odom tops the list of worst players to play for the Philadelphia 76ers since Sam Hinkie took over as general manager. Darius almost wins the title of worst player in recent memory by default. He only played a total of three games for the Sixers during the 2013-14 NBA season. Previously Darius had played a few games for the Los Angeles Lakers. Darius scored a grand total of zero points while in the NBA, which must be a little bit embarrassing. He did manage to grab two rebounds during his short tenure in Philadelphia, but that was not enough to prevent him, from topping this list.
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