The Philadelphia 76ers, from 2010 to 2020, were a team that enjoyed the highs of the highs at the beginning of the decade, the lows of the lows in the middle of the decade and back into contention by the end of the 76ers’ decade. The Sixers decade was defined by The Process in which they intentionally lost games to become what they are now which is a team that is in contention to win a championship.
Philadelphia 76ers All-Decade Team
Philadelphia 76ers Starters
Point Guard – Ben Simmons
Ben Simmons was the final fruit from the tree of the Process. When Simmons was drafted by the Sixers in 2016, they finally had the pieces they needed to contend for a championship. They had already drafted Joel Embiid and saw that he was going to be great. Now they had a player that would also be great one day. Simmons has made the All-Star team two years in a row and it looks like he will be a consistent player in that game for years to come.
Simmons has the ability to play point guard with a high IQ all at 6’10. He still needs a jump shot but he has proved that with his superior size and ability that it doesn’t matter. When he gets a jumper watch out. Simmons is averaging an unbelievable 16.4 points, 8.3 rebounds and eight assists per game. Numbers like that haven’t been seen since LeBron James (who is the person he models his game after). Simmons needs to average more points for the Sixers to become truly great but he eventually should be one of the greats.
Shooting Guard – J.J. Redick
J.J. Redick was with the Philadelphia 76ers for two seasons and in those seasons he helped them win games with his ability to shoot threes. The Sixers could still use him because they are middle of the pack when it comes to three-pointers made and teams are taking advantage of their inability to shoot. Redick decided to go to the New Orleans Pelicans in free agency this year and play with the phenom Zion Williamson. Redick in his career with the Sixers averaged 17.6 points and shot 40.7 percent from three.
In his final season with the team, he made 240 threes which no player on the team would be able to accomplish even with no coronavirus outbreak. Redick had some great moments with the Sixers. His ability to shoot often broke games open for the Sixers. The Sixers right now are hurting from their decision to trade defense for shooting.
Small Forward – Andre Iguodala
Andre Iguodala was drafted in 2006. That was when Allen Iverson was still the scoring dynamo that we all remember him being. When Iverson was traded Iguodala held it down for the Sixers. The team was eventually able to start winning again because they were able to build a team that could compete. Iguodala, in his eight seasons with the Sixers, averaged 15.3 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 4.9 assists. He was an all-around player that could also play defense.
Iguodala could be counted on to guard the other team’s best offensive wing while knocking down the occasional three-pointer. He was also a high flyer. He went to the 2006 dunk contest in which he lost. It was said that he should have won. He did a dunk off a pass from Iverson off the backboard behind the back of the court and came around to dunk the ball. It is a legendary dunk that was never seen before in the dunk contest at the time.
Power Forward – Thaddeus Young
Thaddeus Young came in the Philadelphia 76ers organization with a lot of skill and promise. The Sixers now had two wings in Iguodala and Young that they could play at the same time. They could be a force on the wings. Young had a sweet stroke from three and was able to play the post at the four-spot. Young was a part of the 2012 playoff team that won in the first-round against the one-seeded Chicago Bulls due to the Derrick Rose injury. Then they took the Boston Celtics to a Game Seven in the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals.
Young helped the Sixers win games. He also hung in there for a while with the team during The Process years. In seven seasons with the Sixers, he averaged 13.7 points and 5.5 rebounds. He was one of the most consistent players the Sixers had during his tenure with the team. He could be relied on to play in games win or lose and he went from a rookie to a veteran that could be counted on.
Center- Joel Embiid
Earlier in his career, it was a question if Embiid would even play as he was sidelined for two years in a row. He finally played in his third year with the team. From what we have seen so far it looks like he benefited from those years off. He dubbed himself as The Process. He is the defining player for the 76ers’ decade. Embiid is one of the new centers in the league with guard-like skills from the three-point line. He can also step out and shoot the three. Embiid has made three straight All-Star teams, he’s a two-time All-Defensive team player and a two-time All-NBA player. That is all at 26 years old.
With all those accolades already he has high expectations. Sometimes people can get on him for not showing enough aggressiveness. Although that is true he is for certain the best player the Sixers have had since Allen Iverson. The Sixers are consistently putting pieces around him to help their quest to make it to the Finals. With Ben Simmons’ development and Embiid still improving the Sixers will look to get an NBA championship in the upcoming years.
Philadelphia 76ers Bench
Point Guard- TJ McConnell
A fan favorite during the 76ers’ decade that defined the grit and hard-working mentality of Philadelphia is TJ McConnell. McConnell played four years in college. His last two years were played at Arizona where he had a great career. Even though he played well in college he was not drafted. He also never played in the G-League, which amazing by these days’ standards. He worked on his game and developed a mean mid-range jumper. McConnell as of right now shoots 51.7 percent from the field.
During his tenure with the Sixers, he played tough defense and defined what a backup point guard has to be. The Sixers suffered this season after the got rid of him during the offseason. They have not been able to find a replacement for him. Shake Milton has looked like that player in the recent games played. McConnell proved to be durable and reliable. As a Sixer, he never had a season where he played less than 75 games.
Shooting Guard- Jrue Holiday
Everybody knows Jrue Holiday for lighting things up for the New Orleans Pelicans. Before he played for the Pelicans though, he played for the team that drafted him. The Philadelphia 76ers drafted Holiday in the first round 17th overall. They knew they were getting a straight-up baller after seeing him play at UCLA. He was part of the Doug Collins team early in the 76ers decade. Holiday helped the Sixers go to the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals in 2012 where they lost in seven games to the Boston Celtics.
He followed up that season by averaging 17.7 points per game and eight assists the next year. He made it to the All-Star game that season of 2012-13. That year is his only year going to the All-Star game in his career. In four seasons with the Sixers, he averaged 13.4 points, 5.8 assists and 3.6 rebounds per game. He is still lighting things up for the Pelicans and showing an improved game year in and year out. True Sixers fans though remember his days with the team.
Small Forward- Robert Covington
Robert Covington’s journey to the NBA wasn’t a conventional one. He played for a mid-major called Tennessee State. He played in the G-League before playing full time in the NBA. His time with the Sixers was up and down. There were shooting slumps and times when the fans were on his back. Covington though, when he was on, was able to be a crucial three-point threat for the Sixers. Covington’s rainbow shot helped the Sixers break open games more times than not.
In four full years with the 76ers, Covington helped the Sixers to the top ten in three-pointers made two of those years. In 2017-18 they were 12th and in 2014-15 they were 11th. This year the Sixers are only 19th. Covington is missed in Philadelphia. He was traded for Jimmy Butler. From what Butler said about the team it looks like the Sixers would want that trade back. Currently, Covington is playing with the Houston Rockets where he was playing well before play was suspended.
Power Forward- Dario Saric
Dario Saric was one of those Process draft picks. During the decade for the Philadelphia 76ers, they had a couple of players that were drafted and stashed for later. Saric was one of them. He did not come from overseas immediately but when he did he showed that he was able to play. In his rookie year, he was nominated with Joel Embiid for Rookie of the Year. Saric manned the four spot in his three seasons with the Sixers. He had the ability to put the ball on the floor and drive to the hole, shoot threes, rebound and pass the ball.
He averaged 13.5 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 2.4 assists in his time with the Sixers. In his rookie year, he did not shoot well from three. He only shot 31.1 percent. His sophomore year he followed that up by shooting 39.3 percent which is much better. The Sixers needed shooters around Simmons and Embiid. He was able to spread the floor for them. He plays for the Phoenix Suns now.
Center- Elton Brand
Elton Brand, before he was the 76ers GM, was a fine basketball player. Brand was a force in the post. The big man was able to average double figures in points per game 13 years in a row. he was also able to average 20 points per game or more four years in a row. He made the All-Star game two years in his career. In five seasons with the Sixers, he averaged 12.7 points, 7.2 rebounds, and 1.4 assists. When he got to the Sixers he was a shell of his former self from the Los Angeles Clippers days. He was still able to be effective on a loaded team.
In 2015-16 Brand came back to the Sixers. This time his role was significantly diminished. He only played in 17 games and started one. Brand would become and still is the team’s GM. He was able to orchestrate the Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris trade. This offseason he brought in Al Horford and Josh Richardson. Embiid, Simmons and Tobias Harris all have $100 million contracts because of him.