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Danny GrangerIt's getting pretty redundant to say the Sixers lost because they (a) couldn't defend the three, (b) couldn't shoot the three and (c) couldn't hit their free throws. Today's 110-103 loss to the Pacers can be chalked up to those three inadequacies, as usual.

Mo leaned heavily on Thad Young, with great results. The rookie played a career-high 30 minutes and keyed several runs before leaving the game with a hand injury. I'd like to say the game would've ended differently had he been in there, but you never know. Young had 13 points on 6/11 shooting, 7 rebounds (6 offensive), 2 assists and 2 steals. I think it's time for Thad to be moved into the starting lineup, if his hand injury isn't too serious. Every game he sees significant minutes he winds up stuffing the stat sheet, even without the team running any plays for him. Given Willie Green's minutes, with Iguodala moving to the 2, he's going to score as much as green, grab more rebounds and effect the game with his defense as well.

The Pacers are a horrible match-up for the Sixers. They basically just heave threes, and have guys who can knock them down. The Sixers couldn't defend the three-point line if their lives depended on it. Still, when a team comes in missing its best player (Jermaine O'Neal), you have to expect to come away with a win. The starting lineup was wholly ineffective today, so much so that Reggie Evans barely saw the court in the second half. The young guys off the bench keyed every run the Sixers had, including an impressive 16-0 run in the second quarter which gave the Sixers a short-lived 2-point lead. This role reversal has become the norm for the team. When your bench is more productive than your starting lineup, it's time to shake things up.

Two things I noticed during today's game:
  1. Andre Miller really doesn't like passing the ball the Thad Young. Thad had Mike Dunleavy sealed on the low blocks about 15 times, Miller never gave Thad the ball. One time Thad fought for an offensive rebound, dribbled into position on the low post against Dunleavy and abused him down there with a nice move on the baseline. Give the kid a shot down there, Andre.
  2. Throughout the game, the Sixers switched on pick and rolls where Jamaal Tinsley was at the point. Tinsley is not a scorer. Just go under the picks, he isn't going to take and/or hit the jumper. Every time the Sixers switched, Tinsley took advantage of the ensuing mismatch. Mo should've recognized this and put an end to it early.
Player of The Game: Andre Miller, 21 points, 4 boards, 5 assists and a steal. Miller hit shots to end droughts throughout the game.
Team Record: 15-25

Go to Arin It Out for Pacers coverage (unfortunately, no Dunleavy drunk face after this one.)
by Brian on Jan 21 2008
Tags: Andre Miller | Basketball | Pacers | Sixers |