76ers

The 17 best Sixers of the 2000s

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The 17 best Sixers of the 2000s

Who are the best players to wear a Sixers uniform this century?

To answer that question, we combed through every player since the 2000-01 season who appeared in at least 50 regular-season games as a Sixer. That eliminated names like Toni Kukoc (48 games in 2000-01), Glenn “Big Dog” Robinson (42 games) and, unfortunately, Corey Brewer (an indelible seven games last season).

We considered both overall career — accounting for factors like peak level, longevity, significant accomplishments and awards — and impact/performance as a Sixer, giving the latter more weight. It wouldn't have been fair to ignore the career of a player such as Chris Webber, but he missed the cut because of his relatively brief, uninspiring tenure as a Sixer. This certainly isn’t a scientific exercise, but the method described seemed to be a reasonable approach. 

We tried to put together something resembling a 17-man roster, although the starting five is not exactly comprised of sharpshooters. Let’s say the 19-year-old versions of Lou Williams and Thaddeus Young are on two-way contracts. 

Starters 

Ben Simmons
He’s 23 years old and already has a Rookie of the Year award and two All-Star appearances.

Allen Iverson
As a refresher, Iverson in the 2000-01 campaign joined Wilt Chamberlain, Moses Malone and Julius Erving as the only Sixers to ever be named MVP. If someone decides to make this same list in 2099, he’ll be on it. 

Andre Iguodala
Iguodala racked up 61.2 win shares over eight seasons with the Sixers, ninth-most in franchise history. He’s also the only Finals MVP on this roster, though he of course didn’t earn the honor in Philadelphia. 

Jimmy Butler 
Butler was the most difficult case to evaluate. While he missed out on the All-Star Game last season, he was one of the main reasons the Sixers were about as close as a team can get to the Eastern Conference Finals. 

Joel Embiid
He’s the first Sixer since Iverson to be voted as a starter in three consecutive All-Star games. 

Bench 

Dikembe Mutombo 
The four-time Defensive Player of the Year, Hall of Famer and key member of the 2000-01 Finals team is a heck of a backup center.

Lou Williams
A gem of a second-round pick, Williams went from a teenager sitting and watching Iverson to one of the league’s better bench scorers. He now has three Sixth Man of the Year awards, tied for the most ever, and is averaging 18.7 points and 5.7 assists this year at 33 years old. 

JJ Redick
Redick’s two-man game with Embiid was an unpredictable staple of the Sixers’ offense. The 35-year-old posted 17.6 points per game and shot 40.7 percent from three-point range in his two years here. 

Jrue Holiday 
After Holiday’s All-Star season in 2012-2013, Sam Hinkie dealt him to the Pelicans in the Nerlens Noel trade. He hasn’t returned to the All-Star Game in seven seasons with New Orleans, though he's made a strong case on a couple of occasions. 

Andre Miller 
Miller was well above average for some mediocre Sixers teams — 15.9 points, 6.9 assists and 1.3 steals per game in 221 contests. We’ll turn to him off the bench if we’re ever facing a smaller point guard and need a methodical post scorer. 

Robert Covington 
An excellent off-ball defender and a decent, high-volume three-point shooter, Covington deserves a spot. 

Thaddeus Young 
Young was the best player on the 2013-14 Sixers, the first team of the Process era. He was reliable in six seasons before that, providing high energy and effort both as a starter and a bench player. 

Elton Brand
He didn’t come close to living up to his big free agent deal, but Brand was good enough for Adam Sandler’s character in “Uncut Gems,” oily jeweler/degenerate gambler Howard Ratner, to implore Kevin Garnett to “step on Elton Brand’s f---ing neck.” In all seriousness, Brand exceeded 20 points and 10 rebounds per game before coming to the Sixers, and he was still a solid player, albeit overpaid, when healthy enough to play in Philadelphia. 

Aaron McKie
An emotional Iverson immediately named McKie at his retirement press conference when asked about teammates that helped him during his career. The current Temple head coach wasn’t a tremendous player, but he did win the Sixth Man of the Year award in 2000-01 and clearly had a huge impact on Iverson. 

Eric Snow
Snow falls under the same umbrella as McKie, someone who didn't have the most impressive game but was a longtime teammate of Iverson’s, a valuable complementary piece and a leader. 

Tobias Harris
Putting aside the fact that he received the most expensive contract in Sixers history and the expectations that come with that label — which, admittedly, is a major caveat — Harris has been good. Since ending his 0-for-23 nightmare slump from three-point territory, he’s averaged exactly 20 points per game and shot 39.1 percent from three. 

Kyle Korver 
The 39-year-old Korver has made the fourth-most threes in NBA history, and he’s still at it. He tied for the league lead in made threes back in the 2004-05 season, his second year as a Sixer. 

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Sixers' Joel Embiid jokes he'll lose 50 pounds because of food at Disney World

Sixers' Joel Embiid jokes he'll lose 50 pounds because of food at Disney World

The Sixers departed on Thursday for life in the NBA’s quasi-bubble in Orlando.

They stepped on board their flight with a variety of styles. Joel Embiid’s all-white, hazmat suit look was by far the most unique. 

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If you need me I’ll be in the bubble 😤 📲

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⚫️⚪️

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The NBA’s health and safe protocols mandate that a player or staff member stays in their individual hotel room — the Sixers are at Disney’s Grand Floridian Hotel — while the result of the coronavirus test they took at arrival is returned. Another test then must be taken at least 24 hours after that initial test and also come back as negative for one to advance to Phase 4, which includes team activities such as practice. 

Not every player in Orlando has been a fan of the food during this quarantine period and photos like the one Nuggets guard Troy Daniels shared were not the most appetizing. 

This prompted The New York Times’ Marc Stein to report that “player meals won’t look like airline trays after the first 48 hours.”

As the Sixers transition to the next stage of this unprecedented process, Embiid showed his meal on Instagram with some characteristic humor. 

Yes, that last photo is really Embiid, at a Basketball without Borders camp in 2011.

Though Embiid said Tuesday he doesn’t believe in the NBA’s plan to resume play and laid out a number of concerns, he seems to be having as much fun as he can under the unusual circumstances. 

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Twitter drama with Joel Embiid and Kendrick Perkins involves liked and deleted tweets

Twitter drama with Joel Embiid and Kendrick Perkins involves liked and deleted tweets

Joel Embiid doesn’t tweet much nowadays.

He appeared to make a statement, though, via a recent tweet he liked.

ESPN analyst Kendrick Perkins on Wednesday night criticized Embiid for noting he “hated” the NBA’s plan to restart the season at Disney World and still does not think it’s safe enough. Perkins’ reaction was devoid of empathy and did not address Embiid’s legitimate concerns, instead framing Embiid's comments as "just an excuse."

Embiid then liked a tweet showing “prime Kendrick Perkins,” which features air balled jumpers, ungainly charges and many other lowlights. 

Perkins later felt compelled to reply with a reel of more positive NBA moments for himself. 

A champion with the 2008 Celtics, Perkins averaged 5.4 points and 5.8 rebounds in 782 NBA games. A three-time All-Star, Embiid has career averages of 24.1 points and 11.5 rebounds. There's clearly a disparity. 

There was another layer to the mini-drama Thursday afternoon as Perkins reacted to Embiid wearing a hazmat suit before boarding the Sixers’ flight to Orlando.

Perkins tweeted the following in response to Embiid’s attire: 

However, according to a slew of Twitter users commenting on that post, Perkins initially sent and then deleted a harsher message that told Embiid he should have opted out.

While Perkins’ antics have been foolish, they shouldn’t overshadow Embiid’s legitimate concerns. Perkins does not seem to acknowledge that it's possible to weigh various factors before making a difficult decision, which is what Embiid has done by choosing to travel to Orlando despite being wary of playing during a pandemic, and in an area where cases have recently spiked. 

The Sixers’ first game at Disney World is scheduled for Aug. 1 against the Indiana Pacers (see schedule).

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