Will Tony DiLeo be back as Sixers GM?

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Will Tony DiLeo be back as Sixers GM?

We now know the Doug Collins coaching era has come to a close with the Sixers, but can the same be said for Tony DiLeo as the team’s general manager?

DiLeo was promoted to general manager on Sept. 21, 2012, but he is under contract only through June 30.

Thursday morning, Sixers majority owner Josh Harris fielded questions from media members and the topics ranged from Andrew Bynum to Collins’ successor and who will be making decisions regarding those topics moving forward.

“We are going to run a process and ultimately we will get a lot of input from a lot of people, but at the end of the day, the GM and I will be the ultimate decision-makers,” Harris said.

Harris has a general manager in place in DiLeo. Why not use DiLeo’s name? And if DiLeo is going to be the team’s general manager in the future, why not show stability during a very unstable time and extend his contract?

Harris is jumping to no immediate decisions at this time.

“In the offseason, I believe we certainly made decisions that we all can learn from,” Harris said. “Last year, things did not work out, so everything is going to be on the table. We are going to be looking at all aspects of the organization and trying to bring a winner to Philly, so that is the way I would answer that.”

Still, there is a coach to pursue, a draft to prepare for and free agency to contemplate. Who is the basketball mind in charge? Is it former president turned consultant Rod Thorn? Or despite having an expiring contract, is DiLeo truly the man running the show?

“Rod is at this point an adviser,” Harris said. “Rod went to every game and he [knows] more about basketball than I will ever know and he is a good person to have around. He has been completely constructive and welcomed, but at the end of the day, Tony DiLeo is the GM of the team right now.”

Last summer, there were a number of people considered by the Sixers’ brass to be Thorn’s successor as GM. That list included Danny Ferry, Jeff Bower, Tom Penn and Sam Hinke, to name a few. Ferry eventually removed his name from consideration and took the GM gig with the Hawks.

Did the presence of a strong-willed Collins -- who played a role in all personnel decisions -- impact the candidates who were interested in the job? Will there be another GM search this summer and in what order are things going to be addressed?

These are all legitimate questions looking forward, but Harris is preaching patience because he wants to get things right.

“I would like to have a coach but I want to have the right coach,” Harris said. “I don’t think that will happen overnight. This is something Doug decided and it was decided very recently. So we don’t have a ready-made coach. We have to spend time and analyze a process. That’s the only way I know how to do things.”

Joel Embiid admits to aggravating foot injury after 2014 surgery, almost quitting

Joel Embiid admits to aggravating foot injury after 2014 surgery, almost quitting

Joel Embiid trusts the Process, more so than anyone — the process of patience.

After sitting out two whole seasons because of foot injuries, Embiid learned the importance of patience the hard way.

Appearing on NBA TV's Open Court, Joel Embiid opened up about how he reaggravated the fracture in his foot that cost him the 2015-16 season.

"I didn't know how to deal with patience," Embiid said on the roundtable discussion. "I just wanted to do stuff, that's why I think I needed a second surgery, because after my first one, I just wanted to play basketball again. I just wanted to be on the court and I pushed through what I wasn't supposed to.

"At one point I thought about quitting. I just wanted to come back home and just forget everything."

Embiid goes on to discuss the Sixers' turnaround this season and his mindset during his recovery. Watch the full clip below. 

Embiid also said he models his game after Hakeem Olajuwon. 

 

NBA power rankings: Sixers can't escape the lower third

NBA power rankings: Sixers can't escape the lower third

With the NBA's glorified exhibition in the rearview mirror, we reenter reality of the remaining NBA season. The Sixers still are looking for suitors for Jahlil Okafor while questions swirl around about the health of Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons. 

Some claim they are tanking still, and if those people are talking about the recent NBA power rankings then they would be right. 

Games before the All-Star break
Last Monday and Wednesday the Sixers split their two games before the break, beating the Hornets and losing to the Celtics. 

Dario Saric continues to be the Sixers' most productive player in the absence of Embiid. In the short week, he averaged 19 points (a team leader in that category both games) and 11 rebounds. 

T.J. McConnell continues to control the floor at the point, dishing out seven assists against the Hornets and eight against the Celtics. 

An inability to finish has been the story for the Sixers without Embiid. The Sixers led by one at the half against the Hornets and were tied with the Celtics at the midway point. These are good signs, but these guys are far from being contenders in the east. The experts agree. 

What's next
Only two games this week for the 76ers: Friday at home against the Wizards (7 p.m./CSN) and on the road on Sunday to play the Knicks (7:30 p.m./CSN).

What the experts say
ESPN’s Marc Stein had some fun with his rankings this week using tweets and memes to describe a team’s current situation. The Sixers dropped from 20 to 23 in his rankings — not a significant drop but a drop nonetheless. 

He used this one in his evaluation of the Sixers:

NBA.com’s John Schuhmann bumped the Sixers up from 22 to 21 this week. He sees great improvement in Saric’s game stating: “Saric has already shown a lot of improvement and TLC, with his length on the perimeter, could prove to be a great fit next to the other core pieces if he can knock down shots.”

He added a positive thought on the Demarcus Cousins trade and how the Sixers still made out well even though they were not able to ship Okafor to the Pelicans. 

“The Sixers lost a potential trading partner with the DeMarcus Cousins trade to New Orleans, but still came out a winner in the deal, because they can swap first round picks with the Kings this year and own Sacramento's pick (with no protections) in 2019.”

Bleacher Report’s Grant Hughes did not move the 76ers from the 21 spot on his list last week. He writes that he is intrigued with this processing team: “Sorry, but I'm never going to stop being delighted by the Sixers finding ways to win.”

He made his prediction for games won by the Sixers if they get Embiid back on the court: “It's hard to know what Simmons might bring, but Embiid's contributions are well understood. If he makes it back and looks healthy, Philly could easily win 30-plus games.”

Finally, Fox Sports’ Andrew Lynch dropped the Sixers from 27 to 28 – yikes! His outlook is very pessimistic as he looks exclusively at the injuries of Embiid and Simmons. He writes that a complete shutdown of Simmons would make sense as the season’s end gets closer by the day.