“Tank, tank, and when you think you can’t stand tanking any longer, tank some more.” I imagine that’s what the Philadelphia 76ers’ mission statement looks like heading into the 2013-2014 NBA season. Since the arrival of new general manager Sam Hinkie, they have made no secrets about trying to rebuild by blowing up their roster heading into this season.
As if trading away their lone All-Star in Jrue Holiday and clearing a ton of cap room for next summer weren’t clear enough signs, the Sixers also completed a trade on Thursday that landed them Tony Wroten from the Memphis Grizzlies in exchange for a future second-round pick, per Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.
In his rookie year last season with the Grizz, Wroten wasn’t anything particularly special. In just 35 games he averaged only 2.6 points, 1.2 assists and 0.8 rebounds in 7.8 minutes per game. Wroten’s biggest struggles came with shooting the basketball, as he shot just 38.4 percent from the field and went just 4-16 for the year from beyond-the-arc.
Despite all of that, this is a great signing by the Sixers. Wroten is exactly the low-cost type of player that tanking teams should look to acquire. Though he didn’t have much success last season, many people still believe in Wroten’s potential as a 6’6” point guard who could potentially cause problems defensively and become a solid facilitator.
Wroten will likely share the backcourt with rookie Michael Carter-Williams, another large point guard with sub-par shooting ability. However, the good news for the Sixers is that they can trot both players out this season and then either stick with one of them or use them as trade chips. Trading for Wroten may seem like a low-impact move by Philly, but it’s actually quite savvy.