Throughout all major sports, the term “tanking,” which refers to intentionally losing games in order to gain a higher draft pick of some sort, is really only common in the NBA. And no other team is better known for its tanking abilities than the Philadelphia 76ers.

The franchise has been the face of all losing teams for the past three seasons and continues to set the trend of losing games today.

However, according to the Sixers organization, hypothetically, players aren’t purposely losing games. They still go all out in almost every game they play.

The difference? Their GM, Sam Hinkie, hands a talented coach, Brett Brown, completely inexperienced players. Ever heard of T.J McConnell? Ish Smith? Jakaar Sampson? Neither have we. Sure they played all throughout their lives and played decently enough in college to be scouted into the NBA, but they have zero NBA experience. So what’s the point of that? It all “secretly” leads back to the goal set by this team: to lose.

The 76ers have gone 75-211, as of January 14, 2016, since the beginning of the 2011 NBA season. That doesn’t happen by accident.

The commissioner of the NBA, Adam Silver, expressed his opinion very clearly about this strategy saying, “Am I a fan of their strategy? Put it to you this way, no.”

It’s hard to blame him for saying it, since it’s even harder to watch a team play this miserable for three straight seasons.

“There’s a marketplace of ideas and approaches that go into managing a franchise,” said Adam Silver in December, “For me, if a franchise is managed within the rules of the league it’s acceptable to me.”

In a way, he defends GM Sam Hinkie’s creativity for attempting to create a good future for this team, even if it means relentlessly tanking.

With the 76ers record being so poor for the past few seasons, they have added quite a few high draft picks to their collection. Some have panned out pretty well, while some have had their own consequences.

This past year’s third overall pick, Jahlil Okafor, is a superstar in the making, along with Nerlens Noel who has shown flashes of a bright future himself. This is unlike another previous first round pick, Joel Embiid, who has not even played a game due to a career threatening foot injury, along with Dario Saric, who is still in Europe locked into a contract and can’t come over to play until next season.

The essential question still remains: will the tanking be worth it?

The Sixers haven’t sold out a game in ages, nor have they sold very much merchandise, and yet there are still plenty of fans who are excited for the future.

The moral of tanking still remains, yet the 76ers have found ways to avoid the shame of purposely losing games. They have been in most of their games, competing heavily, and with the lack of talent they have on their team, it is definitely impressive to see that.

It’s evident that the players aren’t in on the idea of tanking. They want to win. It just so happens that all but three players currently on the roster have played more than two seasons in the NBA, which means they are most certainly outnumbered by almost any team they go up against.

Coach Brett Brown was re-signed earlier in the season, which proves that the losing isn’t his fault. He has stuck around with this organization because he feels that the future will all be worth it, and with four first round draft picks this season, he might not be wrong.

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