Jrue Holiday makes his return to Philadelphia tonight. It was less than a year ago that Holiday was starring for the Philadelphia 76ers as he made his first All-Star appearance and looked like the man that would run the point in Philly for the next decade.
That all changed in a flash when Sam Hinkie came to town as general manager promising change. No longer would mediocrity be excepted. He wanted to build a contender through the draft that would be long lasting and have a chance at championships.
Believe it or not, Hinkie’s first order of business was trading the Sixers’ best all-around player in Holiday. What did he get in return? He landed a top 5 protected draft pick and center Nerlens Noel who was coming off of a knee injury.
Many criticized the trade, asking why the Sixers would again ship out an All-Star. Those questions have been silenced lately. Rookie Michael Carter-Williams has emerged as a stud point guard for the Sixers and is an early heavy front-runner for Rookie of the Year.
Holiday has had his ups and downs as a New Orleans Pelican and certainly doesn’t look like a star player right now. However, the sample size is still pretty small. Holiday was starting to become beloved in Philly. Was he a superstar? No, but he was solid and dependable night in and night out.
That’s the rub, though. He wasn’t the star this city craved, and Hinkie is obsessed in his duty to find one. Whether that be through the draft, a trade, or free agency landing a star in Philly is his main priority. The Sixers certainly have the ammo to land one with cap space, trade assets, and a load of draft picks.
Holiday makes his return to Philly tonight in sort of a passing of the torch from Holiday to Carter-Williams. Holiday was certainly a good one, but the Sixers are still steadfast in their duty to find a great one.