Grading the Sixers 2015 NBA Draft

When the Lakers picked Russell as the second pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, there was a lot of noise from the fans..none of it from Philly. With Russell talking so highly of Philadelphia recently and judging by how well his workout went, fans were hoping to hear his name read out for the Sixers following pick. However it wasn’t to be, which left the team in a bit of a situation. Do you go for the best fit, or the best overall player? In this article,e grade the picks that Sam Hinkie made last night. Agree, disagree, let us know on twitter!

Round 1:

Jahlil Okafor, C, Duke: 

Okafor walks in to Philadelphia as arguably the most talented man in his draft class. Offensively he shines and simply dominates the paint.  His strong passing ability will be crucial considering the playing style of the Sixers. However, there was a lot of mixed reactions floating around the internet last night. Purely down to two reasons. Okafor struggles when it comes to jump shots and protecting the rim, something the Sixers desperately need improvements in. The second being that the team already have centers in Noel and Embiid…who were also lottery picks. The three players differ greatly however, but can they rotate to all get playing time? Is Embiid going to get traded? Is Okafor trade bait? There are a lot of uncertainties, but one thing is for sure. Okafor is the best pound for pound athlete in the draft and Hinkie knows that.

Grade: B-

Second Round:

Richaun Holmes, F, Bowling Green: 

Whilst being a power forward, what makes this pick interesting is Holmes’ strong defensive play and rebounding numbers. He may not be the best athlete or the most physical player in the draft which is a big worry for his opening season. His minutes may now also be limited when you look at the current roster. His offense leaves a lot to be desired but the Sixers need to be better in transition and someone with his defensive prowess could come in handy.

Grade: C-

Arturas Gudaitis, C, Lithuania: To most,Gudaitis is a relative unknown. We have to trust in Hinkie in this scenario but that can be hard when the fans know so little about the player.

His size is intimidating and he seems to be very athletic. Gudaitis has a tendency to attack to the rim with purpose after some perimeter work. He isn’t afraid of contact when going for the score and it’s fair to say a lot of his success (AVG 4 rebounds per game) can be put down to his work ethic and physicality.

Grade: D

J.P. Tokoto, G, UNC:  Many analysts and fans predicted Tokoto to go much, much higher in the draft. This may well be the pick that Sixers fans talk about in 3-5 years time as opposed to Okafor. Tokoto  fills the void for a incredibly dynamic wingman. He may not be fully developed and like his new teammates, has a weak jumper. But he’s a prospect, a project. An exciting youngster that could develop into a top guard one day. This has me personally more excited than seeing what Okafor can do.

Grade: B

Luka Mitrovic, F, Serbia: 

Being the last pick in the draft, Mitrovic was a wild unknown and it’s kind of unreasonable to grade a team who are picking at scraps come the end. What we do know about the European however is that he has had a lot of overseas experience, he’s captained his team and averages 49% shooting and 10 points per game.

The position he plays could be one he is pushed into if a few injuries occur during the regular season. He may not be a starter, but he will fill in the gaps nicely. We have seen miracle last round picks in just about every sport, why not Philly and why not now? He could blow up into a sensation or fade away into obscurity..there’s only one way to find out..

Grade: D