Julius Erving: 76ers told me they were on seven-year plan

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76ers coach Brett Brown said expected the team to draft Andrew Wiggins and Nik Stauskas last year and get good.

Brown was just off by a year or five.

Josh Harris bought the 76ers in 2011 and hired Sam Hinkie as general manager in 2013. Somewhere in there, somebody from the team expressed its plan to franchise legend Julius Erving.

Erving on SiriusXM:

When they acquired the team in 2012 maybe, I think the talk was about seven years. Seven years. So, I think it’s still on that same timeline.

Seven years to make the playoffs? Erving:

No. To be good. To be good. To be formidable. To be a contender. That’s probably 18-19.

That might seem like a long time, but it really isn’t that much longer than the typical rebuild.

The Warriors drafted Stephen Curry, decided to build around him and then won the championship six years later. Building a contender usually takes time.

The 76ers are obviously being quite patient, and I believe they’ll organically determine the right time to surge forward. I don’t see them rushing to sign mediocre free agents in five years just because they’re tired of losing. Once they have a strong group of young players, ideally anchored by a superstar, then they’ll use their assets – cap space and future draft picks – to acquire players capable of helping to win immediately.

That process has been delayed both for reasons in their control (trading Michael Carter-Williams) and out of their control (Joel Embiid’s injuries).

But I think they’ll stay true to the process – whether that means getting good before seven years are up or taking even longer.

I’d take seven years as an estimate on a very flexible plan.