The Philadephia 76ers Future

Gabe AllenContributor IFebruary 19, 2010

PHILADELPHIA - NOVEMBER 03:  Elton Brand #42 of the Philadelphia 76ers gets set to shoot a free throw as Andre Iguodala #9 gestures to a teammate against the Boston Celtics at the Wachovia Center on November 3, 2009 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Chris Chambers/Getty Images)
Chris Chambers/Getty Images

The NBA's trading deadline has come and gone. The Sixers, at one point were one of the teams most rumored to be wheeling and dealing, but did next to nothing.

While it is too early to say whether this was the right move, we do know what the Sixers could have done. They could have traded Andre Iguodala and Samuel Dalembert for Tracy McGrady, in a deal that would have cleared $25 million off next season's payroll, $27 million off the next year's, and Iguodala's remaining two years on his contract after Dalembert is gone.

While this trade would've sent our best player packing in return for no on-court help, it would've made us contenders to snag someone from this summer's free-agent pool and given Thaddeus Young more opportunities to shine. Also, I think the Sixers would've probably lost a few more games if they traded Iguodala, thus securing a better draft position.

Or, we could have dealt Iguodala and Dalembert to the Suns for Amare Stoudemire and Leandro Barbosa. I don't think I need to stress how big of an upgrade Stoudemire would've been over Dalembert.

There was plenty of speculation as to whether Stoudemire would opt out of his $18 million contract if he had been traded to the Sixers. However, Stoudemire told reporters that he wouldn't mind going to Philadelphia at all, and saw the Sixers as a team with some nice pieces.

Who knows whether he would've opted in or out? Who knows whether Stefanski would've signed him to an extension? Or who knows if we would've been able to convince him to sign for less money and make a splash in the free agent market in the summer of 2011?

Anyways, moving on from what could have been, let's talk about what lies ahead/what could lie ahead.

Barring an incredible finish to the season, the Sixers will just miss the playoffs this season (if they make it they're the best story in the nba this year). They will all but guarantee themselves a spot in the middle of the first round of the draft, a trend Sixers fans have to be getting used to. With this draft pick, who knows how good our pick will be. And who knows

This season was one that was lost before it began. The Sixers decided to let Andre Miller walk, and waited until midway through the season that it was a good idea to bring Iverson back, an obvious upgrade over Willie Green, who before Iverson came to town was playing so many minutes, and until his very fortunate injury still has had a prominent role for us. The guy is terrible. Eddie Jordan deserves plenty of credit for the Sixers leading the league in games lost in which they held a double digit lead. DiLeo, last season's temporary replacement, was a way better coach than this guy. We really need to get rid of him as soon as possible.

Under Mo Cheeks, who never should've been fired, the Sixers were a team that attacked at all times. In Jordan's Princeton offense, the Sixers, a team without any notable outside shooters (minus Jason Kapono, who rarely gets off the bench), settles night in and night out for the outside jumper.

The coaches rumored to have interest in the Sixers are Larry Brown, Avery Johnson, and Byron Scott (all three would be huge upgrades over Jordan).

The Sixers have no better idea about how good Speights and Jason Smith can be after this year. The Sixers have spent another season playing four on five on offense, with you know who playing as the team's ghost offensive player. Just because the guy is making $12 million doesn't mean you have to play him $12 million mintues. 

Looking forward, next year is Dalembert's last season under contract. He is set to make $12 million next year, and in this day and age, expiring contracts have been traded for some talented players (Pau Gasol, Antawn Jamison, Kevin Martin, John Salmons, Caron Butler, Stephen Jackson, Zach Randolph, Ray Allen) all in the last three years.

If the Sixers don't find anything worth trading Dalembert's expiring contract for, he is off the books following next season, as well as Jason Kapono's $7 million and Willie Green's $4 million.

In the summer of 2011, a man by the name of Chris Paul can opt out of his contract and become a free agent. The Sixers could be a popular destination by that time. The future has potential.