76ers pick Turner at No. 2, ready to usher in ‘new era’

About a week ago, rumors started popping up that the Sixers were considering taking raw Georgia Tech big man Derrick Favors with the No. 2 overall pick. Hogwash.

According to head coach Doug Collins, GM Ed Stefanski and even Jrue Holiday, Evan Turner was the man the whole time.

“I learned in this business, don’t let the facts get in the way of a good story,” Collins said Thursday. “From day one, Eddie and I talked to each other and Evan was our guy.”

Stefanski said that he had discussions with teams about moving back in the draft, but couldn’t pass on Turner.

“We would have taken a project if we thought that was the best available,” Stefanski said. “But, at the No. 2 spot, I think you have to take the best player and I don’t think there’s any doubt that this kid is the best player.”

Collins wouldn’t commit to Turner being his starting shooting guard, but he hinted as much. The Sixers’ newest coach — and No. 1 pick in 1973 — talked at length with Lou Williams about the possibility of a bench role. That would mean 20-year-old Holiday and 21-year-old Turner would form the starting backcourt.

“It’s a new era,” said Holiday.

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