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With the 2022 NBA draft now right around the corner, now is the time to look back at the draft history of the Philadelphia 76ers as they prepare to make a selection in 2022.
Recently, Sixers Wire ranked the top 5 worst draft picks made in the history of the franchise. The Sixers have had some very talented players come through the City of Brotherly Love, but they have also made some draft mistakes–just as every franchise has done before.
In this edition, Sixers Wire is going to rank the top 5 draft picks ever made in Sixers history. The list will be based on what that player did specifically in a Philadelphia uniform and the impact he had on the franchise.
With that being said, let’s get into the list:
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Doug Collins, No. 1 pick in 1973
Collins was a big piece of Philadelphia coming out of the doldrums after a dreadful 9-73 season and he averaged 17.9 points and 3.5 assists in his eight seasons with the Sixers.
Maurice Cheeks, No. 36 pick in 1978
Cheeks was the point guard on the 1983 title team and he averaged 12.2 points and 7.3 assists during his time in Philadelphia. He was named an All-Star four times and is the franchise’s all-time leader in assists.
No. 5 Billy Cunningham
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Cunningham was the 7th pick in the 1965 draft and was a big part of Philadelphia winning a title in 1967. He averaged 20.8 points, 10.1 rebounds, and 4.0 assists with the Sixers while earning the nickname “The Kangaroo Kid”.
No. 4 Hal Greer
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Greer was the 14th overall pick in the 1958 NBA draft and he is Philadelphia’s all-time leader in points with 21,586. He played his entire 15-year career with the Sixers and he was the point guard on the ’67 title team. He averaged 19.2 points and 5.0 rebounds for his career.
No. 3 Joel Embiid
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The only reason why Embiid isn’t higher on this list is because of injuries. Embiid has put together one impressive resume during his six seasons in the NBA. He just finished a 2021-22 season by averaging 30.6 points which led the league as the first big man to do so in 22 years and the first big man to average 30 in 40 years. He also should probably have two MVP awards as well, but that’s for another day. In his career so far, he is averaging 26.0 points, 11.4 rebounds, and 3.3 assists.
No. 2 Charles Barkley
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Barkley was terrific in his eight seasons in Philadelphia. The No. 5 pick of the 1984 draft, he averaged 23.3 points and 11.6 rebounds with the Sixers and he led the league in rebounding with 14.7 in the 1986-87 season. He is third in franchise history in rebounds, fifth in steals, and seventh in blocks.
No. 1 Allen Iverson
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The No. 1 pick in the 1996 draft, the 6-foot guard from Georgetown put the Sixers back on the map. He won Rookie of the Year when he averaged 23.5 points, 7.5 assists, and 4.1 rebounds which kickstarted a Hall of Fame career. He won four scoring titles during his time in Philadelphia and he won the MVP award in 2001 when he averaged 31.1 points, 4.6 assists, 3.8 rebounds, and 2.5 steals per game. He also led the Sixers to the NBA Finals that season.