PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — After finishing with the second-worst record in the NBA last season and tying an NBA record with 26 straight losses, making the playoffs in 2014-15 for the Sixers is a long shot. However, with the 2013-14 rookie of the year in Michael Carter-Williams, last year’s sixth overall pick (missed 2013-14 season due to ACL injury) in Nerlens Noel, and two top-ten 2014 draft picks, former Sixers head coach Larry Brown is optimistic about the Sixers future.
“I think things are going to get better and then the East, you can make a huge jump in the East,” Brown told Anthony Gargano and Rob Ellis on 94WIP on Friday. “I don’t think the East has great teams. Miami is great no doubt about that. Other than that, I think Philly can really make a jump.”
The Sixers have the third and 10th overall picks in the 2014 draft. While the top-three picks are likely to be Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker, and Joel Embiid, the order is widely debated over. Brown likes them all.
“I think they’re going to get two great players [in the draft] and let’s not forget, they got [Nerlens] Noel,” Brown said. “I thought Noel was a steal, I know they gave up a lot, but you get a shot blocker and a kid that plays with that much energy and then Carter-Williams, obviously. You got a long, athletic kid that can play almost everywhere. I love [Andrew] Wiggins, I love [Jabari] Parker, and I like Joel [Embiid] a lot.”
On Thursday night, the Heat lost game one of the NBA Finals to the Spurs. A problem in the electrical system caused the air conditioning to go out and forced players to play in 90-degree temperatures. LeBron James was forced to leave the game early due to cramps.
“Everybody had to play in that environment and I guess you and I would probably say the last guy we thought would be affected by the heat would be LeBron,” Brown explained. “At the end of the day, San Antonio had to make shots down the stretch. It didn’t matter who was in the game, they just played great the last six, seven minutes.”