Philadelphia 76ers control the second round of the NBA draft

(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images) /

With four of their six picks falling after 30th overall, the Philadelphia 76ers essentially control the second round of the 2018 NBA draft.

Over the past few seasons, the NBA Draft has almost been like a second Christmas for the Philadelphia 76ers.

With a roster in shambles and virtually no viable free agents interested in joining a team that averaged just 23 wins a season, the draft was looked at as the only way Philly was ever going to get better, and finally add the players who could turn the team around.

Players like Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, and hopefully Markelle Fultz.

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Loaded with a small fortune of draft picks thanks to the wheelin’ and dealin’ ways of former GM Sam Hinkie, the Sixers selected an incredible 24 players over the past five years, and still have a solid collection of assets to draw from over the next few years.

But even though Hinkie is long gone at this point, having died for our sins to keep The Process going, his impact on the team is still being felt almost three years later.

Much like in 2017, the 76ers hold six picks in the 2018 NBA draft, including the 10th, 26th, 38th, 39th, 56th and 60th overall, and will be able to pretty much do whatever they would like to do on draft day to move around the board.

With 10 players currently under contract, and the option to bring back Richaun Holmes still on the table, Philly has a fair bit of flexibility as to how they decide to construct the roster moving forward, whether that be through free agency or through the draft.

While much offseason talk has been centered around what the Sixers will do with the 10th overall pick, and to a lesser degree the 26th overall pick, very few fans have acknowledged just how interesting the second round of the draft could be. As the owners of over 10 percent of the draft’s day two selections, Philly will likely be moving all over the board on June 21st and could use these semi-valuable pieces to make bigger moves happen.

If, for example, the Sixers fall in love with a player expected to be selected in the late teens, early twenties, the team’s pair of high second round picks could very well come into play to move up a few spots and grab their guy. Additionally, since round two draft picks typically get no guaranteed money on their contracts, many cap strapped playoff-bound squads like the Houston Rockets and New Orleans Pelicans may very well be willing to give up a future asset or cash consideration to add a cost controlled player to balance out the roster.

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Golden State has practically made an art of this second round buyout, having purchased the rights to playoff contributors Patrick McCaw and Jordan Bell in each of the last two drafts, and if recent reporting is of any indication, they may be willing to do so again this year.

For as much as $3.5 million, I think the Sixers could accommodate that desire.

And hey, if no one wants to make a deal, the team could also just add a bunch of players to either stash in Europe, like current prospect Jonah Bolden or have them compete for a spot on the team.

With potential reserve spots available at basically every position on the roster, Philly could choose to select some intriguing college prospects like Penn StatesTony Carr, Duke‘s Grayson Allen, or Miami‘s Bruce Brown and let them compete for a spot on the 15 man roster, with the losers becoming candidates for a two-way contract.

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Though only time will tell exactly just how things shake out on draft night, it’s clear the second round of the 2018 NBA draft will be must-watching TV for Philly fans once more.