I'm happy to welcome Mike back for his second season as a contributor to Depressed Fan. You never get the full picture watching at home, that's where the First-Person Report comes from. If you were wondering exactly how annoying the traveling band of loser Celtics fans were, he's got your answer. Enjoy after the jump, and also thanks to frequent reader Rob for the photo above.
- I know we're in the middle of the World Series & no one cares about the Sixers anyway, but considering the Celtics were in town I thought attendance would be a little better. That's not to say there weren't a ton of green jerseys in the stands. Until '07 the Celtics weren't much of a draw, but all the same people who own pink Red Sox hats were in full force tonight. Between all the Yankee fans I had to deal with across the street on Sunday & all the Boston fans tonight, I wasn't sure how much more I could take.
- Dalembert & Dick Bavetta met up at halfcourt before the game & joked around for a few moments. I noticed last season that just about everyone in the league loves Sammy. I guess if I was an opponent I'd love playing against him too.
- The organization is really trying to sell the fans on nostalgia. They have a new pregame montage set to jazzy swing music with footage of old Sixers. And then the video they played last year, set to the Dark Knight theme music which they play just as the pregame clock is ticking down, now has barely any footage of the current team. The biggest reaction though is still when Iverson steps over Lue in the finals.
- The Celtics, in particular Garnett, absolutely adore Rasheed Wallace, who does the "I have huge balls" dance after the team is introduced.
- Last year Royal Ivey was strangely dancing in the center of the Sixers' pregame huddle. Equally as strange, it seems that this year it's Jrue Holiday. I can't even imagine being in the NBA at 19. Should be an interesting season from him.
ONTO THE GAME:
- Over the past few years it's been adopted as tradition that the bench will stand until its team hits its first basket. Because of a new rule the league passed banning teams from standing in front of the bench, the Celtics all kneel. So if it wasn't before it's now become completely pointless.
- Brand seems okay defensively, but offensively he looks lost. No explosion, no ability to get past any defender. When his jumper isn't going down it's really rough to watch. I know he played okay the other night, but we are probably going to have to get used to 1 out of every 2 games where he just looks old. Not something I thought I'd be saying when he signed that contract.
- I had a perfect angle on Rondo's buzzer beater that he launched over the side of the backboard, and it was utterly ridiculous.
- Eddie House spends a good portion of each timeout gazing into the crowd, I assume to scan for hot chicks. I am always amused by these guys during huddles, and I am now positive that each team has at least 1.
- Phillies' montage in the 2nd Quarter gets a nice response.
- During one of those "get to know the Sixers" pieces they play on the Jumbotron, Jason Kapono is asked to name his favorite singer. His response, Miley Cyrus, because her songs are catchy & "I like to sing along to my girlfriend." I just googled her to confirm that she doesn't turn 17 until later this month. I don't know how the Sixers' let that out in public, during a game, but I am very glad they did.
- It's always interesting for me when Speights plays against Sheed, because ideally that's the type of player I'd like to see him evolve into. Sheed was hot from beyond the arc tonight, and I have a feeling if Eddie Jordan ever let him Speights' range would extend that far too. I don't think Speights has his basketball IQ, but I hope there is something he can learn from his game.
- Chants for Brian Scalabrine were started by a row of young Sixers' fans behind the basket, which led to a pretty funny moment when the small crowd still left erupted when he was finally introduced with about 6 minutes left in the game. Not sure how I would feel if I was Scalabrine, the only player in the NBA with noticeable beer gut. Who am I kidding, that dude is having the time of his life.
- I know everyone will be disheartened by this loss, but keep in mind that before the season Doc Rivers said he wanted his team to become one of the greatest defensive teams of all-time. Not that the Sixers are a great barometer, but judging by tonight they are well on their way. No doubt the Sixers were cold. Thad had one of the roughest shooting nights I've ever seen from him. A lot of that however, especially in the first half, was due to Boston's terrific defense. What does worry me is the inconsistent play of Brand. Additionally, it doesn't look like anyone on this team knows what their role is. It takes more than 4 games to adjust to a new coach, but I'm not sure this is something Jordan can fix.