Early this afternoon, Adrian Wajnarowksi reported that the Sixers were in “advanced talks” with Daryl Morey to join the franchise as President of Basketball Operations.
This is a major coup for an organization that has lacked structure/vision in the front office for the better part of four years now. Morey was naturally linked to Sixers earlier this offseason, but such rumors cooled off once the team hired a handful of experienced hands to work under GM Elton Brand, who was presumed to be maintaining control of the castle. Obviously that’s no longer the case, with Brand now the number two and likely in charge of day-to-day operations, any and all basketball decisions will now go through Morey.
Over the summer I declared Morey to be the answer to all of the Sixers roster problems, and that appears to be the prevailing sentiment among one portion of the fan base.
Another portion of the fan base has decried Morey for his over-reliance on analytics—a topic for another day—his “lack of defense—a misnomer—and the iso-heavy offense his Houston teams played with. Each of these stems from a real concern, but none offer a legitimate reason not to hire him.
Morey’s track-record as one of the most successful GMs in the NBA speaks for itself, with a .615 winning percentage (640-400) his Rockets teams have been competitive for his entire 13-year tenure. His overall shtick may rub some old school fans the wrong way, in the same manner that his protege, Sam Hinkie, rubbed some in this fan base the wrong way. But what Morey has that Sam didn’t is credibility around the league, and pre-existing relationships with most of the games top agents, players, and executives—all of which serve to legitimize him in a way that Hinkie never was.
Sam Hinkie being squeezed out of the Sixers front office is one of the great “what if’s” in Philly Sports, and the NBA in general—‘what if he had been able to finish The Process?’ Obviously we can never know the answer to that question for sure, but this will get us about as close to that answer as we can without a time machine.
There will be a lot written on Morey in the coming days, and there is surely a lot to dissect from his long career in this league, but this is undoubtedly a good hire for the Sixers.