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Sixers GM Hinkie missed draft lottery… maybe to talk to Brian Shaw?

May 23, 2013, 4:10 PM EDT

Brian Shaw AP

If the Philadelphia 76ers had beaten the odds and won the NBA Draft Lottery Tuesday it would have made new GM Sam Hinkie’s life a little easier.

But he would have heard about it on the phone, he wasn’t in New York. And he wasn’t at home in front of his television with a beer, either.

Hinkie might have been trying to get an interview with the much-coveted Brian Shaw to talk about the 76ers head coaching job, reports Dei Lynam at CSNPhilly.com.

I have a hunch Hinkie was paying a visit to Indianapolis, a short trip from Chicago, where he spent the weekend watching the draft Combine. Pacers associate head coach Brian Shaw was helping his team prepare for the Eastern Conference Finals – but Shaw is a wanted man in the industry right now. Finding time to have a conversation with him is crucial, given that there are five known NBAhead-coaching vacancies….

If that’s how it went down, smart move. As Lynam reminds us, three years ago the Bulls brass flew out to Los Angeles on the eve of the start of the NBA Finals where an assistant coach named Tom Thibodeau was with the Celtics, preparing for Game 1 against the Lakers. That series went seven games, then Thibodeau took the Bulls job. And that worked out pretty well.

We don’t know what kind of head coach Shaw will be, but doing advanced work is the smart play here. And Hinkie is smart. Very smart.

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