Philadelphia 76ers 2004 Draft Preview
(Sports Network) – The Philadelphia 76ers had a tough 2003-04 season, as they
finished 33-49 and missed the playoffs for the first time since 1999.
The Sixers have a new head coach in Jim O’Brien, who was the former general
of the Boston Celtics. O’Brien replaced interim head coach Chris Ford, who
took over for Randy Ayers, who was fired just 52 games into the season.
O’Brien inherits a veteran roster that includes All-Star Allen Iverson, who
missed a career-high 34 games this season due to multiple injuries, and
veterans Glenn Robinson, who sat out 40 games, and Eric Snow, who was the only
player to start all 82 games for the 76ers.
Athletic center Samuel Dalembert, who is just 23-years-old, proved that he
can play in the NBA, as he appeared in all 82 regular-season contests and
averaged eight points, 7.6 rebounds and a team-high 2.3 blocks. Twenty-six-
year-old forward Kenny Thomas shined in Iverson’s absence and averaged
career-highs in points (13.6) and rebounds (10.1) in 74 games for
Decisions made by team president and general manager Billy King are based on
the future of Iverson, who averaged 26.4 points and 6.8 assists in 48
contests. Will the team continue to try to build around the Georgetown product
or will the Sixers move Iverson and shape their roster around youth?
Rookies Willie Green and Kyle Korver showed that they can play, while
Dalembert and Thomas have not yet reached their prime years.
It should be an interesting offseason in Philadelphia, starting with
the draft. Don’t be shocked if King makes some trades with his
veterans. The Sixers may even trade down to acquire multiple picks. But the
fact remains that this franchise still revolves around Iverson as long as
he puts on a 76ers’ uniform.
Key Player(s): Samuel Dalembert (center), Willie Green (guard), Allen Iverson
(guard), Mark Jackson (center), Kyle Korver (forward), Glenn Robinson
(forward), Eric Snow (guard), Kenny Thomas (forward).
Team Needs: Youth, rebounding and scoring.
Draft picks: 1st round (9th overall).