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Right Time for Moneyball

With the Sixers getting salary-cap relief over the next two seasons, now is the time for a basketball like Hinkie

Sixers owner Joshua Harris made a fortune in the leveraged buyout industry by valuing the importance of statistical analysis.

With that in mine, now is the perfect time to hire a guy with the mindset of Sam Hinkie as the new President and General Manager of the Sixers.

Hinkie has made his mark as an up-and-coming front office head by using his background in analytics to help restructure and rebuild the Houston Rockets as their vice president of operations since 2007.

Sabermetrics has proven to be an effective tool in getting the most bangs for your buck in roster building, and the Sixers are now positioned to have a lot of bucks in salary cap space after the 2013-14 season.

If the Sixers do nothing but take in one-year contracts this summer, they could have a payroll of under $30 million to go at the free agent class of 2014-15.

Currently, only Jrue Holiday ($11 million) and Thaddeus Young ($9.1 million) are on the books for 2014-15, which is good because you want both of them.

Veteran Jason Richardson will like utilize his player option salary of $6.6 million because he's not likely to get a better deal anywhere else. There will also be the guaranteed money for the 2013 first-round draft pick.

Other than that, the Sixers can be clear of everyone other salary at a time when potential unrestricted free agents could include LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, Carmelo Anthony, Rudy Gay, Luol Deng and Danny Granger.

This summer, the Sixers payroll will drop from $81.9 million to $46.2 million, giving them salary cap space for the first time in several years.

The last time the Sixers had significant cap space they blew it by signing Elton Brand to a near-max contract and then giving Andre Iguodala the same to stay in Philadelphia.

However the Sixers play this, whether it is to at this summer or wait until 2014-15, it was definitely time to bring a fresh outside perspective to what this franchise has been doing in player procurement.

If Hinkle can actually make sabremetrics successfully work to find the right players in free agency, trades the draft, the Sixers future might be brighter than it looks now.