Happy New Year and Happy New Decade! With 2019 coming to a conclusion, not only do we have an opportunity to reflect on an entire year of Sixers basketball, but we also can reflect on an entire decade.
The 2010s were no doubt a tumultuous time for the Philadelphia 76ers and their fans. We experienced The Process, the emergence of new stars for the city, the departure of beloved players, and of course, the heartbreak of *almost* experiencing playoff success. There were a lot of really good players and a lot of really bad players. With that said, here’s my “All-Decade Sixers Team”.
Point Guard: Ben Simmons
Love him or hate him, this one should come as no surprise. Since being drafted by the 76ers with the number one overall pick in 2016, Ben Simmons has established himself as one of the top PGs in franchise history. Through just over 190 games Simmons is averaging 16.0 points, 8.0 assists, 6.3 rebounds, 1.7 steals, and 0.8 blocks per game. He’s also shooting over 55% from the field with an eFG that ranks as one of the best all-time for a guard.
After sitting out his first year due to a foot injury, Simmons made his official NBA debut in 2017 as he went on to win Rookie of the Year. The following season Simmons continued to impress, as he was selected to his first career All-Star game.
While Simmons irks fans due to his lack of shooting ability, his production has been borderline historic in his first few seasons. Simmons recorded the third most triple-doubles of any NBA player in history before the age of 23, joining the likes of all-time greats Magic Johnson and Oscar Robertson.
In 2020 Simmons looks to continue to add to his ever-expanding resume, as he’s making a legit DPOY case for himself with his league-best 2.2 steals per game. Despite fan’s endless calls to trade him for a bag of rocks, Simmons is without a doubt the team’s best PG of the 2010s.
Shooting Guard: Jrue Holiday
Jrue Holiday was “Ben Simmons” before Ben Simmons was even in College. Prior to “The Process” truly taking form, the Sixers had a few seasons where they were absolutely carried by Holiday. Drafted heading into the 2009 season at the age of 19, Holiday instantly began contributing to the 76ers, with many fans expecting him to be the future of the team for quite some time.
Through four seasons in Philly, Holiday averaged 13.4 points, 5.8 assists, 3.6 rebounds, and 1.4 steals with his best seasons coming post-2010. Holiday made the playoffs with the Sixers in both of his first two seasons, helping contribute to the team winning a playoff series against the Chicago Bulls in 2012.
Holiday made his first (and only) NBA All-Star game during the 2012-2013 season, at the time becoming the team’s youngest All-Star in franchise history (22).
Holiday was ultimately traded following his All-Star season as the 76ers embraced the art of tanking. Jrue landed in New Orleans where he remained incredibly effective for the remainder of the decade, averaging just over 17 points per game with the Pelicans through 6+ seasons.
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