Some players have been overrated by the fans. Some by the organization itself. Some were overhyped by people covering the team (whoops!).
We look at the five most overrated Sixers since the year 2000.
5. Elton Brand
It feels a little wrong to put Brand on this list, but the Sixers did offer the team’s current GM a big-time contract. Injuries kept Brand from looking like the player that was selected first overall in 1999 and made two All-Star teams.
Before signing with the Sixers, Brand averaged 20.3 points, 10.2 rebounds and 2.1 blocks a game over nine seasons. Those numbers went down to 13.3, 7.4 and 1.3 during his first stint in Philly. While Brand played a key role, he never lived up to the hype of the «Philly max» deal he signed.
4. Nik Stauskas
Then-GM Sam Hinkie masterminded the trade that brought in Stauskas, Carl Landry, Jason Thompson, a first-round pick and the famous pick swap for peanuts. Stauskas was the eighth overall pick in 2014. It seemed like maybe he was just in a dysfunctional environment in Sacramento and perhaps the new surroundings would unlock his potential.
That never happened. Stauskas’ elite shooting from college didn’t translate to the NBA. At the beginning of his third season with the team, he was traded to the Nets along with Jahlil Okafor in what turned into a pure salary dump. Just 26 years old, Stauskas is currently out of the league and spent this season playing overseas.
3. Kenny Thomas
Thomas was a solid player in Houston and the trade the Sixers made to get him worked out well. The issue is that the team then locked him up with a seven-year, $50 million extension.
Thomas was fine. He averaged 12 points and 8.7 rebounds a game in parts of three seasons with the Sixers. It just wasn’t a prudent move by then-GM Billy King to dole out a deal like that to an OK player. Thomas was part of the Chris Webber trade and then dealt with injuries in Sacramento before retiring in 2010 at the age of 32.
2. Michael Carter-Williams
When Carter-Williams won the Rookie of the Year award in 2014, many Sixers fans thought this would be the guy that brought the team out the other side of The Process. After nearly recording a quadruple-double in a stunning NBA debut, he averaged 16.7 points, 6.3 assists, 6.2 assists and 1.9 steals a game in his first season.
That’s why so many fans were upset when Hinkie decided to trade Carter-Williams just 41 games into his second NBA season. Hinkie noticed the limitations sooner than most and took a generous offer from Milwaukee. Carter-Williams, now 28, has bounced around the league since, eventually finding a role as a reserve in Orlando.
1. Nerlens Noel
Before a torn ACL ended his freshman year at Kentucky, there was buzz that Noel could be the No. 1 overall pick in 2013. Instead he slipped to the New Orleans Hornets at No. 6. In a move that you could argue was the catalyst for The Process, All-Star guard Jrue Holiday was traded to New Orleans for the rights to Noel and a 2014 first-round pick.
While Noel showed glimpses of being the type of modern big teams covet with his ability to run rim to rim, the Sixers’ frontcourt was far too crowded with Joel Embiid and Jahlil Okafor – an honorable mention since he wasn’t overrated for very long – also in the fold.
Noel was traded to the Mavericks in a deal that has little to show for it. He’s turned into an important reserve big for the surprising Thunder. He’s still just 25 years old, so there’s a chance he could still become more.
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