Morey talks pursuit of George Hill, social media and more


Sixers president of basketball operations Daryl Morey has been busy.

Along with aiming to figure out how to best position the Sixers’ roster for playoff success, he’s been making media rounds to explain his process and talk about the state of the team.

NBC Sports Philadelphia’s John Clark interviewed Morey on Friday for his podcast, Takeoff with John Clark. Below are a few snippets from their conversation: 

On his satisfaction at acquiring George Hill: “I’m really happy. I talked to his agent, one of his longtime friends, Matt (Ward). We almost signed him in free agency a bunch of times and for whatever reason, it didn’t work out. It did feel like a personal reunion that we were finally able to get him on a team."

Does he think the Rockets don’t want to help him out?: “They’re very professional; I can’t imagine that’s the case. I’ve seen those rumors and stuff. I think they’re just making the best deals. I think (general manager Rafael Stone) and (assistant general manager Eli Witus), who are there, do an amazing job. I think, if we’re the best deal for their franchise, for sure they’ll make it. I don’t put anything into that.”

How he thinks about the Sixers' window with a big man like Joel Embiid that’s had injuries: “Yeah, you have to look at that. Of course we looked at it. If there are multiple moves … we’re perfectly comfortable giving up some future (assets) to try to push our odds higher this season. We put the most weight on this season. But frankly, nobody made it hard on us yesterday. George Hill we think is a huge upgrade. Maybe some people see the other options as bigger but even assuming that’s true, it was in la-la land, really. You could see when certain players weren’t moved that that was true.”

How have Embiid and Ben Simmons surprised him? “I would say defensively, but I would also say coming in, a lot of people were like, ‘Hey, the two of them can’t play together.’ Really, I was open-minded. Until you work with someone every day, it’s really hard. Our job is to do our best from a distance to evaluate them when we’re at other franchises. You don’t really know them until it’s every day. The Joel and Ben fit is one that can work and has worked, and will take us very far. That was one that I was able to knock out of mind that a lot of people were talking about coming in.”

On his social media use: “Well, my daughter does my Instagram, so she helps me with that. With Twitter … there’s a lot of dead time on elevators and things like that. I enjoy it. Part of this job is people root for a team because they want to feel like they’re part of something — part of a fandom, part of a community. They like to have a connection with authentic players, authentic coaches and I think an authentic front office that is all together trying to win a championship. I think that’s an important reason that people are fans of a team and come to our games. At the end of the day, my job is to win but at a higher level, it’s more (Sixers CEO) Scott O’Neil’s job and (Sixers managing partner) Josh Harris’ job. We’re an entertainment product. Winning is the best entertainment, but also liking the players, the coaches and front office is part of what we’re selling.”

The full podcast is below: 


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