If you look at the teams who have tanked successfully, without having a roster devoid of talent, traditionally they've had injuries to grease the skids, if you will. The Sixers have had some injuries this season, but none to the players who really matter when we're talking about winning and losing games. Heading into tonight's game against the Nets, perhaps quantity will make up for quality, where the injury bug is concerned.
If you missed the news
yesterday, Thad Young broke his thumb in Monday night's game. He's out for tonight's game, as is Marreese Speights. Lou Williams is a game-time decision.
Personally, I think Lou should rest his back. I think everyone and anyone should rest whatever ails them. If Lou, Thad and Speights are all out, we're talking about a seriously thin roster for the game. Expect every able body to appear, maybe even Jodie Meeks. The Sixers will be down to Brand, Dalembert, Iguodala, Jrue, Willie, Kapono, Smith, Carney and Meeks, so 9 bodies. Assuming Willie starts, that means your bench consists of Carney, Smith, Meeks and Kapono. That rivals NJ's pathetic bench.
Forget about tanking for a second, though. Even if you're a purist and you're worried about the integrity of the game (even if the league isn't, Donaghy, cough, cough) what's the point of rushing any of these players back at this point? Even if there's a 5% chance of aggravating the injury, play it safe. Get these guys some rest if they aren't absolutely 100%.
For the record, I believe Eddie Jordan will do everything in his power to win this game tonight. He's more worried about the headlines if he loses to possibly the worst team (record-wise) in the history of the league than anything else. I wouldn't put it past him to pressure Lou to play.