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Sixers Begin West Coast Swing In Denver

So you said a couple posts ago that you wouldn't have done anything differently this summer? Doesn't that basically mean that you think our core is enough to win a championship (since we won't be able to afford any really big-ticket names now that we're locked in with Iguodala and Brand)? And isn't that absurd? Our problems are way bigger than replacing Miller with a better shooting point, or sending Dalembert out for shooting and starting Speights, can solve. I think it's glaringly obvious that Brand isn't and probably never was franchise player on a contender material, and that Iguodala is only a third scorer on a good team at best, otherwise he's forced to take shots that he's generally incapable of making and forced to handle the ball way too much. That's my opinion. Now, if Thad blossomed into a superstar that would change a lot, but right now I think you kinda have to revise your expectations for him downward a little. It would probably have been, as far as I can see, better to wait for the free agent class of 2009 or 2010, at which point, with Miller off the books, we'd have enormous cap room and could've gotten any number of guys who (a) would address our real weakness - scoring and (b) are just flat-out better players than Brand.

First, Carlos Boozer is probably the only guy in the 2009 FA class who may be better than Brand. That's a big may, especially considering Boozer's lack of defense and his injury status this season.

Second, I assume you're talking about getting LeBron, Wade or Bosh in 2010 free agency. There's zero chance any one of those guys would choose Philly over any of the other 10 teams who will have cap space that summer had the Sixers spent this year and next year as cellar dwellers. People don't want to play in Philly, the only reason we got Brand is because we showed signs of life and made the playoffs last season. Whether that was an illusion or not, the good play is what made us attractive.

Do I believe this team as currently constructed could win a title? No. Do I believe they're much closer than they were this time last season? Absolutely. That's what I ask for, marked improvement year over year. I believe they made a huge step in personnel that hasn't translated onto the floor yet.

The bias has begun already by the announcinc crew. The lead guy talking about 'hopefully another bashing by the Nuggets'.

Wonderful. Hopefully they'll have to spend the entire game making excuses for why the Nugs are getting killed.

Exactly what I was thinking:) Homers!

Alright WG, give us some of that D we've been missing, too.

Miller just said 'we got a whole shotclock'

Willie came out hot, now he's just gunning. Too many jumpers.

Bryon reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 21:30

Everyone is settling for jumpers. They should try to penetrate and kick or something or at least finish.

I don't like that first sub at all. Lou for Iggy, moving Willie to SF?

No minutes for Sp8s in the first, disappointing.

Alvin reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 21:41

Very. We're probably going to lose most of the games on this trip anyway, I'd rather see our best young talents on the floor.

Not a bad quarter coming off the holiday in that altitude. Hope they pick it up.

Threes killing us, again.

Good dish, Ivey.

Man, I LOVE Sp8s trailing on the break.

We're not gonna win a shootout against anybody. But hey, the 3-point drought is over, that's a plus, right?

I'd love to see JR Smith in a Sixers' uniform.

Bryon reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 21:55

You aren't the only one. He would be coming home of sorts being from NJ.

btw, the "best backcourt in the league" (harris/carter) 11/33 from the floor tonight and losing to the Bobcats.

What's with Lou missing the free throws? Miller should have taken the technical, he has shot about 85% this season.

Miller came in with the clock stoppage. I think you have to already be in the game to shoot a T.

Alvin reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 22:00

My bad. But this team's free throw shooting is just embarrassing. There must be loads of high school kids watching our players thinking, "I can shoot them better than those guys".

John reply to Alvin on Dec 26 at 22:01

The leagues FT percentage is just embarassing as a whole - no one cares about FT shooting any more.

BTW - this game is god ugly

There's zero chance any one of those guys would choose Philly over any of the other 10 teams who will have cap space that summer had the Sixers spent this year and next year as cellar dwellers. People don't want to play in Philly

If the sixers were able to offer more money than any other team I bet you they'd play here...Athletes go where the money is more 99.9% of the time.

Bosh, LeBron and Wade will get max offers from multiple teams. If it's the most money that gets them, none of them will switch teams.

John reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 22:06

I'm well aware of that - but I still disagreed with your thinking that said 'people don't want to play in philly' - it's as worn out as ESPN mentioning santa claus

It wasn't really an indictment against the city, it was a statement about the the team. I should've said, no one wants to play for a cellar dweller. If they do, then they'll choose the Knicks over Philly.

John reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 22:11

Lebron claims he wants to play for a team that contend - the idiotic theory that Lebron has to play in NY to maximize his exposure is silly - dudes got a tv pilot based on his life for gods sake - so the Knicks better start finding some talent as well...all things being equal if Lebron is to be believed, winning will matter....so if the sixers have a better core than the other teams with money - and they got two really good starts - they'd have a fair shot if they have the cap room.

Too many people seem to think that this was a team 'one player away' - but when you start Sam Dalembert you're ALWAYS at least one player away

Well, look at it this way, then. If they can find some way to move Miller and Dalembert in a three or four-team deal, for say, Stephon Marbury or Jermaine O'Neal. They'd have enough money to add a max contract to this team after next season. Meaning you could add Wade, Bosh or LeBron to a core of Williams, Iguodala, Speights, Thad and Brand.

You still wouldn't have a viable option at the point, though, unless you got really lucky in the draft. Can't use your MLE this summer either.

I think it's pretty competitive. Good D in spurts by both teams.

John reply to Bryon on Dec 26 at 22:07

Since when did Ugly and Competitive become mutually exclusive?

Bryon reply to John on Dec 26 at 22:09

When I use to play on the playground as a kid.

I'm calling it right now, the Sixers will win this game. They just avoided the 2nd quarter collapse and actually finished the first half strong. They stopped settling for jumpers.

More minute for Speights in the second half and keep up the strong defensive effort and this is a W.

Brian i think you and me have been the only ones campaigning for jr smith since the beginning of the summer. he is exactly what we need a pure scorer with a beautiful jump shot. His head is just crazy enough that hes not untradable.

John reply to Steve on Dec 26 at 22:13

I've seen lots of people clamor for JR smith - so what - he's inconsistent, erratic, and really doesn't work real hard at getting better - Philadelphia Sports fans would shred him

The sixers have more than one need

The sixers need to be better on the defensive glass, defend the 3 better, and learn to make their FTs...they won't maintain 50% shooting int he second half most likely and the nuggets will shoot better than 42.9

Nuggets are shooting 50% on threes, only 39% on twos. Are the Sixers packing the paint on them?

The high fg% for the Sixers isn't a result of hitting jumpers they normally miss, it's because everything is going to the hoop (aside from Willie's jumpers early on). It's absolutely sustainable if they stay aggressive on offense.

Making their FTs is going to be key, agree on that.

Alvin reply to John on Dec 26 at 22:26

Effectively, our problems that have existed since last season have been a) defending the 3, b) making our free throws, c) outside shooting.

These problems have not gone away at all and until we get rid of one or two, we'll be struggling.

John reply to Alvin on Dec 26 at 22:28

Defending the 3 has been a probelm for a long time

Miller just took a three with 18 or 19 seconds left on the shot clock. Anyone have a guess as to why?

John reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 22:31

He's an idiot?

Graham reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 22:31

Still feeling it from the first half

Alvin reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 22:34

I'm glad we're making our threes today but let's not get carried away.

Yea. Silence all that negative energy flowing tonight.

Here come the stupid Sammy plays. Pass to himself, goaltend. Ugh.

John reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 22:35

Gets him out and Speights in quicker?

Holy crap is Denver bad when Melo doesn't play.

Our sucky bench is beating theirs 15-5. That is a surprise.

Can we have Speights out there please?

Don't stop doing what got you this big lead. Thad dribbling out for a contested three? Come on, you're better than that.

Alvin reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 22:47

Probably why DiLeo called a timeout. I love Young but that wasn't what I expect him to do.

The activity on defense tonight is nice.

Billups is heating up, fourth quarter should be fun.

Excellent D in the third. Keep that up, oh and get Evans out of there.

Speights in Nene's head.

We wouldn't want to get in a free throw shootout, would we?

Yeah, I second Brian. What is Evans doing out there?

Now that's what I'm talking about.

It's interesting to watch them giving this game away

13/26 from three now for Denver. They're shooting 41% from the floor, 50% from three. Unreal.

Here we go. Weren't we 17 up at one point?

I'd like to see how many times a team has given up 15 threes and won.

If you would have been told that the Sixers could be up five with around 5 to play on the road, you have to take it everytime, especially on the 1st game of the trip.

Holy crap. They haven't even attempted a two yet this quarter! We're 6 and a half minutes in.

Alvin reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 23:19

I think Billups did try one, but still it's ridiculous seeing this.

Man, Speitghts was playing with a good rhythm. Hate he went out.

John reply to Bryon on Dec 26 at 23:21

New coach similar mistakes - though did Willie get hurt again?

Bryon reply to John on Dec 26 at 23:24

Just cause he went out doesn't make it a mistake.

Give it away, give it away, give it away now.

Trying to ride Miller. 4 shots in last 5 possessions. 2/4 on those. Not really running any offense. Sammy bricking those FTs sure hurts at this point.

Hit your friggin free throws.

I've given up expecting our guys to make free throws, especially Evans and Dalembrick.



We found the big man under the hoop!

Wow, what a revelation.

Win or lose this game just shouldn't be this close

Confidence. Clamp down on D.

Huge defensive series by Miller there.

Feels like the Indiana game doesn't it? Shorthanded team beats us in the final minutes.

Miller or Lou here?

When did Melo lose the cornrows? Didn't recognize him.


Wow, I didn't see that one coming. That was actually smart.

Sam would have missed that...he would have missed the free throws as well :)

When did Melo lose the cornrows? Didn't recognize him.

I believe a while ago

and he misses the free throw. deflated again.

this has to be Chauncey for the winner, right?

Did he miss from the line? Well doesn't matter at this point, I'm sure they'll go for a 3.

Alvin reply to Alvin on Dec 26 at 23:35

LOL. I should shut my mouth.

Oh, and please stop talking about other teams being under-manned. The Sixers are missing their best player, on the road.

John reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 23:36

I'm confused - if i'm to believe everything i read the sixers are 'better' cause they can run now that brand is hurt ;)

Bad coaching decision Tony Dileo - that play should be for Miller or Williams - not Iguodala

WHy isn't Speights starting yet?

2 rebounds in 18 minutes might have something to do with it. Of course, that's better than our starting PF who had 1 board in 30 minutes.

Wonderful. Walk w/ 3.7 seconds to go for Iggy. I need to find a new hobby.

DiLeo has to get Rush and Donyell in there right now. Any timeouts left?

Way to make it more difficult Miller

T on Miller. Awesome. No timeouts. That's just splendid.

I hate losses, but they happen. Pissing games away just makes me want to break things.

God this team makes me sick. Iguodala needs to know his role. He is never going to be a go-to guy. And the coaches have to tell him the same.

I'd rather see Miller or Lou, or Thad with the hook, heck even Evans from 3 rather than Iggy having the ball at the final possession. That's how much I dislike him trying to win the game. He's at his best when he lets the game come to him. He was going well for 40 minutes then lost his mind on that last play. Splendid.

...heck even Evans from 3 rather than Iggy having the ball at the final possession.

Glad I can still smile. This cracked me up.

Alvin reply to Brian on Dec 26 at 23:52

God I have to amuse myself, cuz this team depresses the hell out of me.

Chauncey ruins your night again... jesus, I'd kill myself if I were a 6ers fan :)

hang in there Brian, you'll be alright

Where were you when the Sixers had their one solid win of the season against your Pistons? :)

Boney reply to Brian on Dec 27 at 2:40

I was here at the very end of the game... it was a typical "can't hold a lead against a weaker team" showing by my boys.

I think Chauncey is in Andre Miller's head...

They moved Miller onto J.R. Smith late in the fourth, after he'd already buried like 6 threes. Either Iggy or Williams was on Chauncey when he torched them at the end.

I hate that bastard, glad he's out west now.

Boney reply to Brian on Dec 27 at 2:45

you said "talk to me when Stuckey is shooting over 40%"...

I'm here

talking to you... what do you think? the kid has some chops eh?

He's had a good month, mostly against scrub teams. Still not sold on him.

Stuckey's not that good, but he's at least better than Willie or Lou, with much room for expansion.

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