As they parted ways for the summer, the Sixers made one thing crystal clear: The playoff run was nice, but it's not going to cloud future plans.

 

Coach Doug Collins has referred to the 20-9 start as "smoke and mirrors." The first-round win over the Chicago Bulls wouldn't have happened if Derrick Rose was healthy. Pushing the depleted Boston Celtics to the brink was exciting, but predictable.

 

Now that they have significant roster flexibility for the first time in recent memory, things are going to change. This team is desperate for scoring and rebounding.

 

"I think that we played about as close to our potential as virtually anybody this year," said team president Rod Thorn. "I think we know that we need to get better."

 

This offseason will provide plenty of avenues for roster improvement. (Dwight Howard and Deron Williams are the big names out there). Turn to Page 24 as we take a look at some burning questions moving forward for the Sixers. The NBA Draft is tentatively scheduled for June 28.