Charles Barkley defends Hinkie and The Process

94WIP Staff
May 20, 2020 - 8:32 am
Charles Barkley is adamant that The Process was a success.
The Sixers Hall-of-Famer and now NBA analyst on TNT joined Howard Eskin on his Saturday morning show on SportsRadio94WIP to discuss Sam Hinkie, The Process, and the pairing of Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons. For Barkley, the Process label overshadows the reality of why the Sixers lost so much.
"I think the whole thing with Hinkie is overrated from a story standpoint. I don't think the Sixers were trying to lose. Embiid and Simmons were hurt. They probably would have won another 10, 15, 20 games if both those guys had played. I don't think they were trying to lose, I just don't think they were any good without those guys."
When asked about Sam Hinkie rebuilding, Barkley quickly defended the former Sixers-GM on his decisions to trade players and build through the draft.
"He didn’t trade away good players, those guys weren't going to win. The way this thing is now, you either have to be a contender or you are just going to be mediocre. That's the way the game is played now. You can't be a number seven, eight seed every year and lose. I have no problem with teams building through the draft trying to get into the lottery. Teams have always done it. The Spurs did it with David Robinson. They drafted him and he didn't play and then ended up getting Tim Duncan. The Celtics did the same thing with Larry Bird. They drafted him, he didn't play, they stunk the next year, and they got Kevin McHale. Teams are always pinking, I have no problem with pinking."
Barkley noted that rebuild helped the Sixers become contenders for years to come.
"The Sixers tanked (for several years) because guys were hurt. You see now the Sixers are going to be contenders. They have been contenders since Simmons and Embiid got here. They are set up to win for the next five years or more. You have to be realistic. Howard, they were a bounce away last year from winning the championship. They would have beat the Warriors because of their injuries. Kahwi Leonard just made a heck of a shot. This year, most people picked the Sixers to win the championship. I really think Hinkie got too much credit and too much blame."
"I'm not saying he did anything good or bad. It was just a really weird situation that he drafted two players that did not play. One of them you drafted injured which I had no problem with. I'm not going to pass on Joel Embiid because if he is healthy, he is one of the best players in the league."
Howard and Barkley also touch upon the NBA returning to action (Barkley is opposed), his thoughts on what separates Lebron, Jordan, Kobe and Magic, and his list of the best NBA players of all-time.