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May 19, 2016

What they’re saying after the Sixers landed the No. 1 pick

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Normally in these posts, the national media understandably doesn’t have many positive words to offer about the Sixers. For at least a week, that changed after Tuesday night:

NBA Draft to See Simmons Go to Sixers, Say Sources, Leaving Ingram to Lakers: Kevin Ding, Bleacher Report

Ding is reporting that the Sixers are leaning toward Simmons:

The 76ers will further investigate Ingram, but they have great confidence in the upside of Simmons, whose ambidextrous athletic ability at 6’10” and 240 pounds comes with innate basketball instincts.

It’s not as if the 76ers need to get to know Simmons to decide if they want him. Simmons was born and raised in Australia, where 76ers director of performance research and development David T. Martin was an iconic sports-science leader until leaving the Australian Institute of Sport for Philadelphia in 2015.

An indecisive GM is trouble come NBA draft time: Kyle Neubeck, Upside Motor

Good one from my Sixers Beat co-host. If you don’t welcome the opportunity of choosing the right player, maybe you shouldn’t be making a pick:

If you aren’t confident enough to use your own talent-evaluation skills, information & opinions compiled by chosen staff and the gift of time to make a confident decision for your franchise, why should anyone allow you run one at all?

In Defense of Sam Hinkie, the Ultimate Sports Power Nerd: Nate Jones, NY Mag

Process Trusters write in high places:

If you asked Hinkie if Tuesday’s news vindicated the Process, he’d probably say that the lottery is pure chance and thus incapable of vindicating anything. He’d say that, and we’d love him for it, and go back to feeling vindicated all the same.

The 76ers' ‘Process’ gets a perfect ending: Andrew Sharp, Sports Illustrated

Sharp was at the RTRS party:

But it's not as if caring about winning teams is that much smarter, right? None of sports is sane, and it ends badly 98% of the time. The best parts of sports are the friends you have to complain about them with, and the moments you occasionally get to celebrate way too much. That's what last night was in Philadelphia. That's been the past three years. People hated "The Process" because it wasn't what sports was supposed to be about, but for the people who bought in, it was everything that sports has always been about.

Lottery Fallout: Sixers Will Receive Sacramento’s Unprotected Draft Pick in 2019: Derek Bodner, Philly Mag

It’s a pretty confusing interpretation of the Stepien rule, but the Kings’ 2019 pick that is owed to the Sixers is unprotected. There’s a reason we gave that trade an A when it happened:

The Sacramento trade last summer was one of the best high reward / no risk gambits in recent memory, and it became significantly more valuable after Tuesday night’s lottery.

Philly's strategy paying off big time, and best is yet to come: Kevin Pelton, ESPN Insider

Pelton takes an in-depth look at where the Sixers currently stand and their options moving forward:

If things go well, the 76ers won't have room on the roster for all of those draft picks, particularly because Philadelphia also has so much cap room to use in free agency. Still, they can be useful in completing trades and ensure a steady stream of cost-controlled young talent as the Sixers' past lottery picks become more expensive after they complete their rookie contracts.

Hinkie's vision might not necessarily have required Philadelphia to win the lottery to bear fruit. But now that the 76ers have the No. 1 pick, they're very well-positioned to build around him.

It Was All Worth It (By a Sixers Fan): Maurice Peebles, Complex

Fewer wins in the last three years combined than the Charlotte Hornets had this year alone? Worth it. Multiple seasons of watching the team acquire NBA-ish players with Hall of Fame names like Casper Ware, Furkan Aldemir, and Chu Chu Maduabum? Worth it. Simultaneously being the most hated and most laughed-at team in American basketball? Still worth it.

Waiting for pingpong balls to bounce the Sixers' way at draft lottery: Bob Cooney, Philadelphia Daily News

This is pretty cool. Cooney got to see the actual lottery drawing, so he knew the result an hour before everyone else. He couldn’t say anything, though:

After 7:31 You want to see something fun? Put about 40 adults in a room with no cellphones or computers and watch them try to conduct themselves. It's sad and funny at the same time.

Kylie Rubin has no problem passing the time, however. She's wearing out the pingpong ball machine, turning on the air, drawing a number, putting it back. Wash, rinse, repeat. A lot.

Sixers' Brett Brown has tie to draft prospect Ben Simmons' family: Henry Abbott, ESPN

We’ve written about this before, but it’s a pretty crazy coincidence. Brett Brown coached Ben Simmons’ father in Australia in the late-80s:

"Each of the teams in Australia were allowed to have two American imports," Brown said. "And one of the American imports we had was a player named David Simmons, from Harlem, New York -- who is Ben Simmons' father. The cheerleader -- you can't make this stuff up -- the cheerleader that was the head cheerleader of that team ended up marrying David Simmons, our import, who I coached for five years with Lindsay Gaze, and had Ben Simmons, their son."

Follow Rich on Twitter: @rich_hofmann