Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Byars fiasco just another day at the office for King

By John McMullen
The Phanatic Magazine

The Sixers quietly waived rookie swingman Derrick Byars on Monday.

Let’s not overstate things, Byars was an excellent college player at Vanderbilt but he wasn‘t exactly going to see 30 minutes a night on a team already loaded with young swing players.

If he made the club, Byars probably would have played the majority of his minutes in the NBDL.

And, it’s not like the Sixers didn’t want the reigning SEC Player of the Year. Billy King did try to convince Byars to go overseas so the Sixers wouldn’t have had to bring him to camp. But, Byars, who missed most of camp with a lower back injury, insisted on giving the NBA a try and, with 14 guaranteed contracts already on the books, it came down to the Vandy star or fellow second-rounder Herbert Hill.

Samuel Dalembert’s stress fracture made the decision easy for the league‘s worst GM. With Sammy still on the mend, King felt he had to keep another big man since the veteran bigs BK has accumulated aren’t exactly the sequel to Moses Malone.

Sure, the Sixers could have cut veteran Kevin Ollie but with a $3.4 million dollar deal set to expire after the season, Ollie is one of King‘s most valuable trade commodities.

King could have jettisoned dead weight like Shavlik Randolph or Calvin Booth but that would be admitting a mistake.

It’s also evidently very important for King to get to that 25-win mark.Important enough to cut a player with a much higher upside for a poor man’s Reggie Evans.

So, for the 30th pick in last year’s draft -- you know one of the selections King got for Allen Iverson -- the Sixers ended up Yep, the team actually selected Petteri Koponen in the 30th slot because they had a deal in the works with Portland. King had no absolutely no interest in the Finnish sharp-shooter and only selected him with an eye on getting Byars and the extra Benjamins.

Fast forward three years and Byars will likely be the next Bruce Bowen, Raja Bell or Matt Barnes -- an ex-Sixer who becomes a solid role player on a winning team.

Meanwhile, Hill will be playing in Turkey and King will still be trying to sell Ed Snider and all of you on the siren’s song of the expiring contract.


I’ll be right here writing about of the greatest con-men that ever lived -- Billy King.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Amen, King only gets by because nobody cares about the Sixers. He makes Ed Wade look like Branch Rickey, my interest in the Sixers will continue to wane until they get a competent GM making the decisions