Although the end of the decade saw the Philadelphia 76’ers hitting near rock bottom with a record of 27-55, Philadelphia was still one of the better Eastern Conference teams in the past decade. The 76’ers made the playoffs in six of the past ten seasons, including winning the Eastern Conference Championship in the 2000-01 season. They squared off against the L.A. Lakers in the finals, only to fall to them after just five games. The future looked promising for the Allen Iverson led Philadelphia 76’ers and they did make future playoff appearances, but were not able to work their way back into the title game again in the 2000’s. The 76’ers teams were mostly made up of one star player and a bunch of solid role players, so only a couple of guys stick out as the best players to wear a 76’ers uniform. My apologies to Aaron McKie; he will have to settle for being the sixth man of this team. Here are the best five Philadelphia 76’ers from 2001-2010. (Only accomplishments and stats while playing for the Philadelphia 76’ers from 2000-2010 were considered.)
1. Allen Iverson
Everybody I’m sure will agree that the answer is just that, for whom is the greatest Philadelphia 76’er of the 2000’s. In his time spent with the Philadelphia 76’ers, Iverson had his best seasons in the 2000’s. He managed to average over thirty points a game in five different seasons, including a career high thirty-three points per game in the 2005-06 season. Iverson led the league in scoring in 2001, 2002 and 2005. In 2001, he led the 76’ers to the finals and earned himself the NBA MVP award.
2. Andre Iguodala
Need something sleeker to go by than just your first name? No problem, just use your initials, unless of course you are in Philadelphia and your initials happen to be A.I. Iguodala will probably never overtake the original A.I. in Philadelphia, but he has done more than enough while there to become more than just A.I. 2. Andre Iguodala is known most for his high-flying antics and amazing dunks, but he has also been the main scoring option in Philadelphia ever since Iverson left. Iguodala has led the 76’ers in scoring for the past three seasons.
3. Samuel Dalembert – Dalembert played eight seasons with the 76’ers and really never completely lived up to the expectations Philadelphia had for him. He averaged a mere 8.1 points per game during his time with the 76’ers, but he still made a big impact on the game. Dalembert hung his hat on the defensive side of the ball, coming up with 1.9 blocks per game and a solid 8.3 rebounds per game in his eight seasons with the 76’ers. Imagine how good his seasons would’ve been if he was able to hone in his skills on the offensive side of the ball, too.
4. Eric Snow
In the four seasons that Snow played for the 76’ers in the 2000’s, the most points per game he averaged for a season was only 12.9. He was a point guard that also only averaged six to seven assists per game, which although not horrible, is not great either. All of that aside, Eric Snow was a great part of the reason that Philadelphia was such a good team in the early part of the decade. They had Iverson to score, and let’s be honest; having Iverson on his team didn’t exactly help his assist numbers. Iverson wasn’t the catch-and-shoot kind of guy. He was a let me break your ankles and show you my quickness guy. Snow was a defensive wizard and played the perfect complimentary part to Iverson because he could play such great defensive against the league’s best shooting guards. Without Snow, the 76’ers never would’ve made to the finals in 2001.
5. Andre Miller
If Miller had played more than three seasons with the 76’ers than he would’ve been a bit higher on this list, but his time served is just a bit too short to get him above the likes of Snow or Dalembert. It’s not a coincidence that the 76’ers were able to make the playoffs in two of the three seasons he played with them, just to have them tank the season in which he departed. Miller was a good second scoring option to Iguodala and did a great job of getting the most out of his young athletic teammates. In the 2008-09 NBA playoffs, Miller stepped his offensive game to the next level scoring 21.2 points per game, which was only half a point behind Iguodala for the series.