A decent night at the Wach, for once. The Sixers played hard, they played well and they lost, handily. 71 games into this lost season, that's pretty much the best-case scenario. Sad, right?
Kapono in the starting lineup? If that didn't signify a white flag to you, I don't know what will. The logic behind it wasn't absurd, I suppose. Lou Williams was out, so Jordan didn't want Jrue and his backup "point" guard Willie Green both in the starting lineup. He did have the option of going with Carney in the starting lineup, but whatever.
Truth be told, if the starters could've stayed out of foul trouble and played 40+ minutes each, the Sixers may have had a chance to win this game. Elton Brand was a beast in the first half, and no one SVG put on him could do much to slow him down. In the second half, Andre Iguodala stuck his jumper in his back pocket and went to work. He drove the lane to kick out, he drove the lane to score. He absorbed contact and finished. He basically did everything Andre Iguodala has done for the entirety of his career, save this season. In fact, Van Gundy had to resort to double teaming him to slow him down. Dalembert was up to the challenge against Dwight Howard, Jrue shot poorly for the second consecutive game, but made up for it with 7 dimes and three steals. And Kapono sort of stayed out of the way and tried not to be too much of a liability. The starting lineup was actually +7 in the game, which I find significant when you're talking about a 16-point loss.
The bench, however, was a complete disaster. Smith and Speights combined to shoot 1/12 from the floor, Carney was a dismal 3/11. They were thin on the bench and it showed.
According to Eddie Jordan, Orlando just made shots. Which is the theme to his defensive philosophy, if guys would just miss wide-open shots, the Sixers defense would look pretty good.
Filed under "Why the hell would they do that," is the report that came out earlier regarding Andre Iguodala's health. Apparently, he's been playing with plantar fasciitis, a painful sprain in the foot. I realize Iguodala's a tough guy, a men among men in this league with his unbelievable ability to stay on the floor, but there's no reason for it right now. None whatsoever. I can get why he wants to be on the floor. If it was me, you'd have to drag me off, but the team really needs to step in. Dei Lynam said favoring the wounded foot has actually caused some pain in the other foot. That's a recipe for disaster. There's nothing to be gained by playing him injured for the next 11 games. The team really needs to sit him down. He's logged so many minutes, and each player only has a finite number in his career, let's not waste anymore on this lost season.
Player of The Game: Iguodala, 23, 6 and 6
Team Record: 24-47
Up Next: Wednesday, @ Milwaukee
In case you were wondering, none of the teams the Sixers are battling for lottery balls won. Sacramento lost to the Grizzlies, unfortunately. The Sixers end the night tied for the 6th-worst record in the league.