As the 76ers head into a new era of basketball, not only were they looking for a new head coach, but also a new president and general manager. Today the Sixers announced that they had found their man, in the form of now former Houston Rockets Executive VP Sam Hinkie.
Hinkie was officially named the General Manager, and as Rod Thorn will be retiring this offseason, he will likely step into the role as President of the team as well.
Hinkie is coming from the Rockets, which should excite fans, because the Rockets have done a tremendous job over the past two seasons of rebuilding their team. Everyone knows about the trade for James Harden and signing of Jeremy Lin, but it’s been smaller moves like drafting Chandler Parsons and signing Omar Asik, that have turned the Rockets into a playoff team with a bright future.
Hinkie will face several crucial decisions early on, as he tries to pick up the pieces of a disastorous 2012-13 season.
First Hinkie will need to help select the teams replacement for Doug Collins, as the Sixers next head coach. Recently Jrue Holiday and Evan Turner have come out in support of Associate Head Coach Michael Curry, so you would have to think he will get consideration. However, Hinkie will likely interview other candidates such as Pacers assistant coach Brian Shaw and Warriors assistant Mike Malone.
The next decision Hinkie will face is what the Sixers do with Andrew Bynum. Bynum is an impending free agent, and if the Sixers just decide to let Bynum walk given his injury problems, I don’t think anyone can blame them. But when Bynum is healthy, he is one of the top ten players in the NBA, at a position that isn’t exactly littered with great talents in this era. And stars don’t just grow on trees, so if the Sixers feel like Bynum can return to his 2011-12 form, you can make a case that it makes sense for Hinkie and the Sixers to at least consider giving Bynum a max-deal, because if Bynum can stay even relatively healthy, the Sixers are going to improve quickly. Again, it is a tough choice that Hinkie and the Sixers will face quickly.
The final big decision that the Sixers will face, is what to do with the number eleven pick. Cody Zeller is a player who recent mock drafts, have the Sixers targeting, but what they do with the pick will depend heavily on how they handle the Bynum situation, and whether they choose to hold onto or trade Evan Turner.
Overall my initial reaction to the hiring of Hinkie as GM and President is good, but how he performs this offseason, will likely make or break his tenure in Philadelphia.