THERE REALLY wasn't much question in 1996, the last time the Sixers had the No. 1 overall pick. Then-general manager Brad Greenberg may have peaked at tapes of Stephon Marbury, but Allen Iverson was going to be his selection. Kobe Bryant went 13th, but it was impossible to foresee what he'd go on to become. Plus, Bryant still was only 17 years old.
Iverson might be the best draft pick in team history. It's either him or Charles Barkley. Most of the rest of the Sixers' choices throughout the years look like the Schuylkill at rush hour. There's plenty of volume, but nobody really doing anything.
Nine draft picks have gone on to play in an All-Star Game for the Sixers, eight first-rounders and 1978 second-round pick Maurice Cheeks. By comparison, since 1964 - when the Sixers first drafted after moving from Syracuse - the Celtics have had 10 draft picks play for them in All-Star Games, the Lakers nine and the Spurs six.
Raymond Lewis, a 1973 selection, was an early enigma. He was, at 20, then the youngest player ever drafted. By all accounts, he had oodles of talent, but the temperament of a middle schooler. He was second in the nation in scoring as a freshman in 1973 when he was ruled eligible for the draft. A legend in Los Angeles - Lewis was a star at Cal State-Los Angeles, which now competes at Division II - but he never played in the NBA.
Lewis was the team's second first-round selection that year. The first was Doug Collins, who was the No. 1 overall pick and the prize for going 9-73 in 1972-73. Word is that Davis dominated Collins in preseason camps, but Davis often would get homesick and disappear.
Collins is better known these days for his work in TV, but he was a four-time All-Star for the Sixers in his first six seasons. Because of knee and foot injuries, Collins played his last full season in 1977-78 when he was 26. He retired three years later.
The only other time the Sixers had the No. 1 overall pick was in 1986 when they traded it to Cleveland for Roy Hinson and cash. They probably should have just stayed put and drafted Brad Daugherty to run alongside Barkley, who was just entering his prime.
There are two certainties when it comes to sports drafts. One is that no one has any idea how things will play out. The other is that hindsight is 20-20.
* Luke Jackson, officially fourth overall in 1964, was the first pick made by the Sixers since relocating from Syracuse. He played nine seasons in the NBA, all with Philadelphia, and was a key contributor to the 1966-67 championship team. The players picked ahead of him were Walt Hazzard (territorial), George Wilson (territorial), Jim Barnes, Joe Caldwell and Gary Bradds.
* Monti Davis, the 21st overall pick in 1980, played two minutes of one game in his Sixers career. He was beaten out by Earl Cureton and waived in the first week of the season. Davis led the NCAA in rebounding his junior year at Tennessee State in 1979 at 16.2 and once pulled down 30 in a college game. He died of a heart attack at age 54 in 2013.
* Andre Iguodala is the only Sixers draft pick ever to win MVP of the NBA Finals. Problem is he won it last year while with the Golden State Warriors.
* In 2006, the Sixers took Swiss swingman Thabo Sefolosha with the 13th pick and immediately shipped him to Chicago for the 16th pick (Rodney Carney), cash and a 2007 second-rounder who never panned out (Kyrylo Fesenko). Sefolosha has been a fine defensive player in his 10-year NBA career, but unfortunately is better known for sustaining a broken leg in an altercation with New York city police outside a club prior to the 2015 NBA playoffs. Sefolosha has a lawsuit pending.
* The Sixers have never taken a kid from LSU in the first round, but they have selected two players from Duke: Jim Spanarkel (1979) and Jahlil Okafor (2015).
* The only first-rounder selected by the Sixers from a Big 5 school was Saint Joseph's Matt Guokas, who went ninth overall in 1966. He played about 12 minutes per game as a rookie when the powerful Sixers won the NBA title.
* Jrue Holiday, a 2009 first-rounder, is the last Sixers draft pick to play in an All-Star Game (2013) for the club. He was dealt to New Orleans five months later for what became Nerlens Noel and Dario Saric.
Who will be the next All-Star? Okafor? Joel Embiid? Noel? Ben Simmons?
All of the above?
None of the above?
Should be an interesting week . . . and beyond.