|Born||December 1977 (age 38)
|Alma mater||University of Oklahoma
Samuel William Wallace Hinkie (born December 1977) is the former General Manager and President of Basketball Operations of the Philadelphia 76ers. A graduate of the Stanford Graduate School of Business, Hinkie was formerly a member of the front office of the Houston Rockets under Daryl Morey. In 2015, ESPN named Hinkie's Sixers as the major professionals sports franchise that had most embraced analytics.
Personal life and education
Samuel Blake Hinkie was born in the Netherlands in December 1977. Hinkie's father, Ron Hinkie, was an employee of Halliburton at the time of Hinkie's birth. Hinkie's family moved to Easley, South Carolina when Hinkie was three. When Hinkie was ten years old, the family moved to Marlow, Oklahoma, the hometown of Ron Hinkie, although Ron continued to work overseas. Hinkie was the younger of two siblings; Hinkie's older brother, Bill, died shortly after the family moved to Oklahoma. In 1996, Hinkie graduated from Marlow High School, where he was valedictorian. Hinkie played defensive back for Marlow's football team and point guard for Marlow's basketball team.
Hinkie graduated summa cum laude from the University of Oklahoma, where he served as president of the student business association and chairman of the dean's roundtable, and was named one of the top 60 undergraduates in the country by USA Today. While at Oklahoma, Hinkie met and eventually married fellow student Alison Burness, proposing to her on a bench next to the Arc de Triomphe. Following graduation, Hinkie accepted a job offer from Bain & Company, before taking a job with Bain Capital in Australia. Hinkie earned an MBA from Stanford University, during which time Hinkie advised the San Francisco 49ers and Houston Texans on draft strategies and statistical analysis. Hinkie also began working part-time with the Houston Rockets while attending Stanford.
Following his graduation from Stanford, Hinkie joined the Houston Rockets in 2005 as a special assistant to general manager Carroll Dawson. Hinkie was promoted to vice president in 2007, becoming the youngest vice president in the NBA; in that same year, Daryl Morey became the new Rockets general manager. Hinkie was promoted to Executive Vice President in 2010. In Houston, Hinkie promoted the use of advanced statistics in professional basketball while "second-in-command" to General Manager Daryl Morey, another widely known advocate of advanced basketball analytics. While in Houston, Hinkie played a key role in acquiring future starting point guards Kyle Lowry and Patrick Beverley.
During the 2012 NBA off-season, Hinkie interviewed for the vacant position of general manager of the Philadelphia 76ers, but the Sixers decided to promote Tony DiLeo to the position. After the disastrous Andrew Bynum trade, in which DiLeo surrendered many assets for a player who would never suit up for the franchise, he was let go, and the GM position was again vacant. At this juncture, the Sixers hired Hinkie on May 14, 2013 to succeed DiLeo as general manager and Rod Thorn as president. Hinkie became the third Sixers GM since owner Josh Harris bought the Sixers in 2011.
Hinkie's first major move took place during the 2013 NBA Draft, when Hinkie traded All-Star point guard Jrue Holiday to the New Orleans Pelicans for the Pelicans' top-5 protected 2014 pick and Nerlens Noel. Hinkie also selected future Rookie of the Year Michael Carter-Williams and Arsalan Kazemi in the draft. In August 2013, Hinkie hired former Spurs assistant Brett Brown as the new Sixers coach, replacing Doug Collins, who had stepped down before Hinkie's hiring. Hinkie's first year was marked with accusations that Philadelphia was "tanking" in order to get a high pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, and the Sixers tied the NBA record for longest losing streak. In two trades at the 2014 NBA trade deadline, Hinkie traded veteran Sixers Evan Turner, Spencer Hawes, and Lavoy Allen, acquiring five second round picks and Henry Sims. After the season, Hinkie traded long-time Sixer Thaddeus Young to the Minnesota Timberwolves for the Miami Heat's top-10 protected 2015 first round pick, Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, and Alexey Shved.
During the 2014 NBA Draft, Hinkie selected Joel Embiid, Dario Šarić (after a trade that sent Elfrid Payton to the Magic), K.J. McDaniels, Jerami Grant, Vasilije Micic, and Jordan McRae; Hinkie also traded the 47th pick in the draft for NBA Developmental League veteran Pierre Jackson. During the 2014-2015 season, Hinkie signed D-League veteran Robert Covington to a four-year contract; alongside Noel and Carter-Williams, Covington was selected to participate in the 2015 Rising Stars Challenge. In three separate deals at the 2015 trade deadline, Hinkie traded Carter-Williams and McDaniels for Javale McGee, Isaiah Canaan, protected 2015 first round picks originally owned by the Lakers and the Thunder, and a second round pick. In the 2015 NBA draft, Hinkie selected Jahlil Okafor with the third overall pick, along with Richaun Holmes and J. P. Tokoto in the second round. During the 2015 off-season, Hinkie traded two second round picks for Nik Stauskas, Jason Thompson, Carl Landry, a future first round pick, and the right to swap first round picks with Sacramento in 2016 and 2017.
During the 2015-2016 season, the Sixers hired former Phoenix Suns General Manager Jerry Colangelo as chairman of basketball operations. On April 6, 2016, Sam Hinkie stepped down from his positions with the 76ers. Days after Hinkie's resignation, Jerry's son Bryan Colangelo was hired as the Sixers' general manager and president of basketball operations. Jerry Colangelo resigned from his post at the same time, but remained as a special advisor to the team. A month after his resignation, the 76ers would get themselves the #1 spot for the 2016 NBA Draft.
As a member of the Rockets and Sixers, Hinkie has presented lectures in basketball statistics to audiences at Harvard, Stanford, the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference.
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