While speaking to Business Insider, Hill admitted that he might not be able to come up with fixes for tanking because of his role with the Atlanta Hawks. “Look, I’m Vice Chairman of the Atlanta Hawks, so I’m probably not, you know…,” Hill said in response to Silver’s comments. “I’ll defer to Adam Silver and the brain trust in the NBA to figure out what’s in the best interest of the NBA.”
Hill, however, did admit that tanking doesn’t always work for teams. The Philadelphia 76ers, who pulled off one of the more obvious tank jobs in the NBA for several years, are currently enjoying an exciting revival and are led by top draft picks in Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons. “I mean, the Sixers, look, they’re in a great position, and it’s been a long, arduous process for them and their organization and their fan base,” Hill said. “We can see now that the players they have drafted who have been just fantastic in [Dario] Saric and Embiid and Simmons. Those kids are talented, they have a lot of runway in front of them, and they’ll be good for a long time.
Marc Berman: Silver on tanking next season with revised lottery odds: “That will reduce incentive for a race to the bottom. But I will say I can’t say I’m convinced that will eradicate the problem.” Knicks will certainly be racing amidst the bottom.” (@Sirius XM NBA
The 76ers spent four years throwing games, but the Process netted them Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons. Now, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski spoke on his weekend podcast about teams “determined to lose,” with GMs calling up players they knew weren’t NBA-quality and owners lambasting coaches for winning. “I know of an instance of an owner berating — really berating — his coach here in the last several weeks of the season for going in and beating a pretty good team on the road, going, ‘What are you doing?’” the NBA insider reported.
It wasn’t just the fans — owners were saying the same thing, too. Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN had front office insider Bobby Marks on his podcast and told this story (at around the 30-minute mark, hat tip NBA Reddit). “I never heard more talk from front office executives frustration with coaches who were winning games they didn’t want them to win. And owners, I know of an instance of an owner berating, really berating his coach here in the last several weeks of the season for going in and beating a pretty good team on the road, going ‘what are you doing?’ And think about that, that should not be going on.”