Our 5 year Trust The Process bet has come to an end and I was victorious. It comes with mixed emotions as the home team lost in the playoffs for the 4th time never advancing to the Eastern conference championship. Let’s review how a bet like this comes about and the outcome.
Let’s say the Process began when Sam Hinkie was hired on May 13th, 2013. The Process was built on acquiring high draft picks, and many future draft picks, by losing games. Let’s review the Process throughout the years.
Sidenote: I made this in Photoshop years ago.
2013-14 – Record – 19-63 – Drafted Michael Carter Williams 11th
2014-15 – Record – 18-64 – Drafted Joel Embiid 3rd
2015-16 – Record – 10-72 – Drafted Jahlil Okafor 3rd – The bet was made this year & Sam Hinkie was fired on April 6th, 2016
2016-17 – Record – 28-54 – Drafted Ben Simmons 1st
2017-18 – Record – 52-30 – Drafted Markelle Fultz 1st, Lost to Celtics in playoffs
2018-19 – Record – 51-31 – Lost to Raptors in playoffs
2019-20 – Record – 43-30 – Lost to Celtics in playoffs
2020-21 – Record – 49-23 – Lost to the Hawks in playoffs
A 5 Year Bet
The premise behind a 5 year bet is a polarizing difference of opinions. When the Sixers went 0-18 to start the ’15-’16 season, I’m sure I was disgusted with Sam Hinkie and 3 years of Sixers bullshit with nothing to show for it except an injured 7 footer and a street fighter (Okafor). Sam and I decided that an Eastern Conference finals showing was good enough for $1,000 as proof that the process could be trusted. Neither of us expected that it would go down to the 7th game of year 5 to determine the outcome.
I don’t like team’s tanking. It’s disrespectful to fans with no proven track record. My goal was to put my money where my mouth was to defend this position. In hindsight, betting against a home team is a terrible idea, especially with a 5 year time frame. I don’t want to root against the Sixers at the behest of money. I’ve learned that you want to be with the home team as the money is usually secondary to the great experience of shared happiness… and it’s tough to be happy losing money. I didn’t consider that aspect in year 1 of our bet.
As the Sixers progressed, it was clear that I was on the wrong side of the bet. The Sixers improved as Embiid was a bona fide star, Simmons wasn’t broke, Fultz was another #1, and they were able to attract talent (Redick, Butler, Horford, Harris) throughout . Brett Brown was a Pop disciple but never had the next level of coaching to push them over the edge which led to Doc. Kawhi ended the Sixers best chance when Butler was the alpha. The Celtics were a thorn in their side twice and kept my bet alive. This year was simply a tragedy not to beat the Hawks. I wound up getting extremely lucky to win this bet and certainly wouldn’t call it a great one.
The good news is there is no question that Sam’s money is going to a party. I’m hardly one to put this in a saving’s account as I didn’t earn it. One of these upcoming weekends when I’m out I’ll make it readily known that we are heading to a bar and the tab is on Sam. Can we spend 1k? Depends on how many readers show up.
The bad part about this bet is that someone is a winner and someone is a loser. You don’t get the chance to make many 5 year bets in your life. Especially ones that come down to the wire. I don’t feel great taking Sam’s money. I’d much rather take the casino’s money. So to have the personal aspect loom over a bet for so long, I’m glad it’s over. There’s obviously a sense of I’m right and you’re wrong which creates a tension that wasn’t worth it in my mind. Just know that when I put my money out there, there’s a chance I win and this time, I came out on top. Next time? Who knows. Who has any propositions?