I’ve now looked at every single player in the league and analyzed whether or not they’re worth keeping around. After I have made these decisions, it obviously leaves them with less than a full roster, but I’ll give an overview of who they have and who they’d need to draft or pick up in free agency. They would only have 8 players on their roster right now, so things will change. Here’s where they’d be at this point, assuming I magically predicted every single offseason move correctly:
C Nerlens Noel
The Sixers traded Jrue Holiday away for a reason, and that was to get Nerlens Noel and build for the future. The reason they wanted Noel was for him to start at center, and I see him doing no less than that next year as long as he stays healthy. At 6’11” and 228 pounds, he’s a bit skinny for a center, as well as inexperienced, but the offseason will give him plenty of time to catch up. Noel is likely going to need a season to get used to the NBA, but his potential is huge.
PF Thad Young
The biggest question mark on this roster is what they’re going to do with Young. It seems like trading him is always an option, but if they did that, they’d have to eat up salary from someone else to make sure they pay somebody. Young still provides a lot of value to the team and I’d actually prefer if they held onto him, but now that Joel Embiid has been declared seriously hurt, it could hurt his draft stock and therefore push Jabari Parker and Andrew Wiggins up in the draft board. Since the Sixers are very interested in taking one of them (more likely Wiggins), it seems more and more likely that they would trade up to the #1 pick. Young would likely be involved in that trade, allowing them to draft a PF with the 10th pick in the draft to replace him. I’d rather just keep him in Philly, but the more time that passes, the less likely that theory seems.
SF James Anderson
Anderson played alright for the Sixers as their starting SG, but his inconsistency was always the problem. I don’t think Anderson was ever cut out to be a starter, and it showed by the lack of production he had in some games. He’s probably alright in a backup role, which is where he likely will be (especially if they draft Wiggins), but I’m throwing him in at SF for now because they hypothetically only have 8 players on their roster, going by my predicted offseason moves. It’s not even set in stone that Anderson is returning for next year, but if he does, it will most likely be as a backup.
SG Tony Wroten
Wroten played very well as the 6th man for the Sixers last year, often playing more minutes than some of the starters. It was his first season where he received real minutes, and I think he played well enough to keep him around as the 6th man. I only have him as the starter because he’s the best SG they have on this 8 man roster, but he will likely be moved to a bench role if they draft a SG to start. Either way, Wroten should still be a big part of their team next year.
PG Michael Carter-Williams
Carter-Williams is the centerpiece of this team right now, and is the future of the franchise. After winning Rookie of the Year, he proved that he has a lot of skill and still a lot of potential. There are many aspects of his game that he can still improve, and I’m sure he’ll spend the offseason working on those. He first has to recover from shoulder surgery, which will keep him out of Summer League, but he should be back after that. If the Sixers want to start making a run at the playoffs in the future, MCW has to continue to get better and become this team’s clear leader. He has the potential to be a great multi-talented point guard.
C Henry Sims
I never expected Sims to do much for the Sixers, but he turned out to be a very good starting center for them in the time he played at the end of last season. While he isn’t a normal starter, he would definitely work as a more than serviceable backup center to Noel. Sims can move back to the 15-20 minute range, or even get more than that in order to ease Noel into the starting lineup. Whatever they decide to do with Sims, I hope they bring him back and use him well, because he’s a young talent that could help them a lot off the bench.
PF Jarvis Varnado
After a couple 10-day contracts, Varnado proved that his success with blocking shots in the D-League wasn’t just a fluke; he’s a good basketball player. He’s still very raw and probably has a lower FT % than I would, but he hasn’t even played a full season in the NBA. The Sixers would be smart to pick up the team option on him for next year and continue to use him as a backup…his shot blocking skills are unparalleled for players that get minimum minutes like he does.
SG Jason Richardson
Last but not least, or, maybe he is least, but whatever, is Richardson, the grandpa of the team. He’s not really a grandpa at 33, but he is compared to the rest of the roster (he’s 7 years older than the next oldest player, which is actually Varnado). Richardson could play and be a good veteran 3-point shooter off the bench, or he could not play and just stay hurt for the rest of the season and collect his big paycheck. As far as I’m concerned, I don’t care at all what he does. If they bring Anderson back, they’ll have plenty of help at SG and he might even be the likely candidate for a healthy DNP…that is, if he ever gets healthy enough.
Overall, this is mainly a group of backups, and they’ll need to use their draft picks to get some starters. They’ll especially need a starting SF and SG, and maybe even PF if they trade Young. I’m sure that with the 7 picks they have, they’ll get more than enough players for this team. It just depends on if they take the right people…