As we all know by now, the Philadelphia 76ers traded their way up to the number one pick to go get their guy in Markelle Fultz. The talk around town is that Fultz is the one to finally complete “The Process.” Philadelphia, as a whole, was overjoyed at the sight of getting another number one prospect, and now there is yet another reason for hope. So, with a strong Sixers following in the Basketball Society, we decided to ask some our guys what they thought about Fultz and the draft.
Kyle Allan – @kallan441
Ryan Calpin – @calpinr_wcu
Evan Anderson – @Jordainian21
Ryan Cowan – @RCC1992
1. Outside of Markelle Fultz, were you happy with how the draft went? Should Colangelo have kept some more of the second round picks?
Allan: I am indifferent besides Fultz. I like obtaining the rights to Anzejs Pasecniks because he is a guy whom the Sixers could stash for two years and see what happens when this team is hopefully a playoff team. As far as that goes I was not happy that we did not try to acquire any shooters with the 2nd round picks. Hopefully, free agency can bring that.
Calpin: In my opinion, I think that the Sixers could have capitalized with the second round of the draft more than they did. Hinkie worked very hard through trades over the years to compile the amount of draft picks that they had. It was disappointing that they traded back into the first round to take ANOTHER center. They needed to draft two or three shooters hoping one of them pans out. Bigs are not needed. Obviously, I was thrilled days ago when we were informed they were trading up to take Fultz.
Anderson: I was very pleased with the way the draft went about, especially for the Sixers. Moving up to the first overall pick in this year’s draft was a smart move for “completing the process”. The Sixers were in desperate need of a floor general to control how the game plays about. With the addition of Fultz, the team will have just that and much more. Unfortunately, Colangelo giving away some picks wasn’t the best decision because drafting an outside shooter would have been an even bigger addition to the team.
Cowan: I wasn’t jumping for joy, but overall I was content with how the draft played out. Roster spots are limited as is so adding 4 more players in the 2nd round wasn’t realistic. With Furkan Korkmaz possibly coming over this season from Turkey and Free Agency looming, the Sixers weren’t in a flexible enough position to add more unproven talent. Spending their late picks on overseas players yet again will grant Philly continued flexibility which is the overall goal.
2. With Markelle Fultz, what do you think the starting lineup will be?
Allan: I think it will be: PG: Simmons SG: Fultz SF: Covington PF: Saric C: Embiid. I would like to see if the Sixers are able to acquire another stretch four in free agency that would be able to work in and out of the rotation with Saric because he could be successful as a sixth man going forward. I think that Fultz can compliment exactly what Simmons will do at the PG position. Even though it may technically be a PG position for Simmons, expect Fultz to bring the ball up just as much.
Calpin: I think that Brett Brown will have to experiment with the lineup throughout the first few weeks of the season. Fultz needs to learn to play off the ball. In my opinion, they will go with PG: Ben Simmons SG: Markelle Fultz SF: Justin Anderson PF: Dario Saric C: Joel Embiid. I think Covington thrives in the role off the bench.
Anderson: I think the Sixers starting lineup will be PG: Ben Simmons SG: Markelle Fultz SF: Robert Covington PF: Dario Saric C: Joel Embiid. Fultz and Simmons will share bringing the ball up court, similar to a Kyrie and Lebron type. Justin Anderson and Richaun Holmes will impact the game coming off the bench.
Cowan: At the right price I believe Philly should look into acquiring J.J. Redick in Free-Agency and insert him at the two spot, adding outside shooting to a team that desperately could use it. A lineup of Fultz, Redick, Simmons, Saric & Embiid could be very formidable in the East. If the defense is ever an issue, Covington can be brought in as a stopper who can still knock it down from deep.
3. Are the health concerns the only thing that can derail the Sixers future or does something else scare you?
Allan: I am scared of the injuries but with the Process being “over,” I am worried that if one of these three does not pan out then it was all a waste in a sense. I would also argue that this was not a waste of time because the end goal is to not be stuck in mediocrity. Some teams get into that habit and we were stuck in that for so long. The process was worth the risk, in my opinion, we just need health in these guys for the sake of Philadelphia’s heart.
Calpin: Right now nothing else scares me. Obviously, we need to see Fultz and Simmons prove themselves and we need Embiid to stay healthy and build upon the small sample size of 31 games over the last three seasons. Nothing is ever guaranteed but Hinkie and Colangelo built the process trust and we will be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel this year.
Anderson: Health and injuries always scare me, especially when it comes to the Sixers. It is essential that the majority of the team remains healthy throughout the season if they really want to “trust the process” and make it to the playoffs and so on. Hinkie knew this excitement was coming to Philadelphia, and now it’s time for the results to show. Staying healthy is the biggest key to the Sixers success.
Cowan: Nothing scares me more than health. Management has proven to be level-headed and not in a rush to be just mediocre. I have faith that they will continue to make sound decisions while putting this team together and go for the home-run when the moment is right.
4. Do the Sixers need to add free agents right away in this off-season, or should they wait until next year? Who do they sign? They do not need to sign free agents but they should sooner than later.
Allan: They do not NEED to sign free agents but they should sooner rather than later. Look, everyone who has been criticizing this process has pointed out the lack of veteran leadership and I think that is exactly what this team needs. It will take time for big-name free agents to come because that comes with success, but if the Sixers are able to get a solid shooter like a JJ Redick with veteran leadership to go along with that shooting, it can speed up the winning process a little bit.
Calpin: I think that they need veteran leadership and shooters on the outside this season. I think down the line to compete with the best of the best they will need to attract a star in the league. For this season, I believe Kyle had a good example. JJ or to make a move to bring Kyle Korver back to Philadelphia. It may be a stretch but even thinking about Tyreke Evans as he is an unrestricted free agent.
Anderson: Right now, it is not a priority for the Sixers to add a free agent and they should wait until next year. Although, IF they were looking for an addition to the team, it would be their best bet to go for an outside shooter like JJ Redick. Redick, more than likely, will be picked up by a team come November. If the Sixers are looking to add a free agent, go for Redick, otherwise, there is no need to add any other free agents this year.
Cowan: Adding free agents is fine with me as long as max flexibility is kept in tack. I don’t believe Philly will sign anyone for longer than 2 years. If they have to overpay slightly to accommodate for fewer years than so be it.
5. What will Fultz’s rookie season stat line be?
Allan: I think Markell Fultz will be fighting for the Rookie of the Year with fellow teammate Ben Simmons, so that will be fun to watch. I think his stat line will be 16 ppg, 5 assists and 5 rebounds for a really solid rookie campaign.
Calpin: That is such a tough question. He will be able to play a bunch of minutes and be in the starting lineup right away. I think he averages 13 ppg, 4 apg and 7 rpg, but anything can happen.
Anderson: Ah, one of the most anticipated questions that come up before a player’s rookie season. I believe Markelle Fultz averages 14 ppg, 6 apg and 5 rpg, competing alongside his teammate Ben Simmons for the RoY award.
Cowan: Assuming Fultz is the starting PG: 16 points, 3.5 rebounds, 5.5 assists per game.