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Time To Assert Yourself

I was thinking about this and TONIGHTS game to me is going to be more telling about where this team is than a 'surprise' win against the Lakers.

This is a game that can be a let down game but the good teams don't allow it

It looks as though Orlando is gonna overtake the Celts for the 2 seed tonight.

This is NOT what the Sixers need right now.

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john reply to Mike W. on Mar 25 at 17:57
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A. Don't think it matters who the sixers play if they aren't the 5 (or 4) seed - they'll lose in the first round.

B. Don't think it's a guarantee that the magic win tonight

Brian the Mike Miller stat you reported is the one that actually f'd my fantasy team up, LOL

remember how some months ago we were discussing the swapping-Millers trade and I said I was doubtful that Mike would have been an upgrade over Andre. Well, that was the reason. I'm happy we kept the better Miller.

As for weird stats, check Carney's assists-per minute, if you have the time to do some reseacrh I'm pretty sure you'll find he's one of the worst player ever

We have a fighter's chance against the magic. The Celts, come playoff time (healthy, motivated) give us no chance.

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john reply to Mike W. on Mar 25 at 18:13
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We have a Buster Douglas versus a drugged and unprepared mike tysons chance against the magic - (the term fighters/punchers chance has never made any sense to me anyway) - but really - since they start an undersized PF as well (and a much better one than we have right now) and strengthened their PG spot before the deadline i don't think the sixers have a real shot at either one unless more injuries occur

This is obviously a topic for much debate down the road, but I think they have a chance against both teams, possibly a better chance against the celts. I'm not sold on a team w/ Alston as their PG really being a threat and Boston turns the ball over WAY too much, even when fully healthy. Everyone forgets they almost didn't get out of the first round last season.

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john reply to Brian on Mar 25 at 18:43
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No - I don't think they do - i think lots ofpeople hang their hats on that as the celtics being beatable.

I think most people forget how close the games they lost were and how close the games they won weren't

I think most people forget that it was the first season that team was together and their first playoffs as a team (and for a key guy like rondo - their first playoffs ever) and that makes teams jittery

Avg Margin of Victory 23.4
Avg Margin of Defeat - barely below 6

Also - the home team won every game - and the celtics got better (to me) as the playoffs progressed and are a year older.

Just don't see it as much to hang a hat on unless it's like one of those hats babys come with

yes, babys come with hats

I'm not saying it's a lock, I'm just saying they're beatable. Got taken to 7 games in each of the first two rounds last year.

i actually think we match up with the celtics a lot better than the magic. i'm sure i'm alone on that though. i think the celtics will lose in the 2nd round regardless of who they play.

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john reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 18:54
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I think the 2nd round for the celts is probably pretty fixed - cleveland has a 4 game lead - 2nd round will be celtics magic - assuming none of the bottom feeders get lucky - i don't think the magic can take out the celtics.


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Mike reply to john on Mar 25 at 18:57
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yea you're right, orlando vs. boston is pretty much set in stone for the 2nd round. if orlando gets home court i absolutely think they can take them down.

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john reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 19:04
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That depends on the health of Kevin Garnett
Rafer Alston vs ROndo
and how close the refs call the fouls on dwight howard (on offense and defense)

at least to me those are 3 keys

Boston's bench also completely blows. That means something considering the mileage/health on the big three.

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john reply to Brian on Mar 25 at 19:09
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Playoffs tend to shorten rotations - probably 8 man deep - Orlando might have em there but Orlando has less playoff experience on its roster now compared to the celtics right?

The Celtics have a ton of experience in how to lose playoff games. Definitely the most in the league.

I'm really looking forward to the day they stop showing this Kevin Garnett commercial.

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john reply to Brian on Mar 25 at 19:11
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I'm looking forward to the day when the NBA realizes this marketing campaign they've been working for two seasons now "Where crap happens" is exactly that - crap

I wish people would realize that kevin garnett is a punk as well

Holy crap. Kevin Ollie and Rodney Carney are both starting. STARTING!!!!

This needs to be a 30-point win.

oh my god the timberwolves' starting lineup is atrocious. best argument for contraction i've seen.

HAAAA. Ollie and Carney are starting!! Can we pencil this in as a win?

Seriously. If there was contraction, I don't think anyone in this starting lineup would be taken by another team.

TWolves are already playing for ping pong balls.

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john reply to Mike W. on Mar 25 at 19:14
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They should be playing for second - they got jefferson and love - rubio would be a great addition

then again - mchale can only draft/evaluate PFs it seems

This isn't an argument for contraction it is an aargument for some sort of fine or penalty when teams pull this crap

haha great minds...

This has to be the worst lineup any team has started this season. Brian Cardinal is in the starting lineup too.

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john reply to Brian on Mar 25 at 19:15
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Maybe he's just being crafty

Check out the fourth quarter :)

http://popcornmachine.net/cgi-bin/gameflow.cgi?date=20090322&game=OKCMIN

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Mike reply to Brian on Mar 25 at 19:22
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and who the hell is bobby brown?

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john reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 19:25
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He sang the theme to ghostbusters 2

I for one am already angry about this 6-6 start

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john reply to Mike W. on Mar 25 at 19:17
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Why?

Playing down to the competition

Strong indicator as to which team they still are

Eh, if it's tied after the first half I'll agree with you.

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john reply to Brian on Mar 25 at 19:28
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Then no reason to be angry yet is there :)

You aren't alone.

Willie showing his prowess on the break. Awesome.

Willie seems to be wasting space out there as usual.

anyone else finding it very difficult to post comments tonight? worse than usual.

TWolves starting to bring in their real players

Pacers up 6 early!!!! (enthusiasm = sarcasm)

One of the worst 1st quarters of the season. If I had bet on the 1st quarter line (as I was considering) I would be irate.

pathetic

14 points in the first quarter against that lineup. OK. Remain calm, Brian...

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Mike reply to Brian on Mar 25 at 19:36
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yea i'm furious right now and about ready to blow a gasket.

Feel like Thad should be scoring at will tonight.

iggy, 0 points.

Donyell time anyone?

Alright guys, I'm bowing out now. I'm going to have to watch the Sixers' monster second half on DVR later. Play nice while I'm gone, I'll check in later tonight.

i can't even watch this right now. i am furious.

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john reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 19:48
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you really like that word furious don't ya?:)

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Mike reply to john on Mar 25 at 19:58
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well it's a pretty apt word right now

Not for nothing but if the sixers follow up the sweep of the trailblazers at the end of a 5 game road trip with an at home loss to a season sweep by the timberwolves (snapping a 5 game losing streak for the wolves) would think those two events would do a good job of summing up the sixers entire season actually

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Mike reply to john on Mar 25 at 19:57
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precisely

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john reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 20:03
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I think I"ve just accepted the game to game inconsistency and while certain plays might get my angry - nothing the team does any more (good or bad) shocks me - ti's just who they are

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Mike reply to john on Mar 25 at 20:19
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i just had hoped that they'd turned a corner during that road trip. a normal team would have gained some momentum after that portland win. this team truly is mediocre. no matter how many good wins they have you know for certain that they will lay a stinker the very next game. it's no longer debatable.

yea leave miller wide open for 3 you fucking idiots

they're getting destroyed on the boards

someone needs to tear everyone in that locker room a new asshole at halftime

If Iggy is a true leader he will take over the game. What an embarassing first half for him.

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Mike reply to Mike W. on Mar 25 at 20:16
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yea he looks like all those minutes he logged on the road trip took a toll.

this team wonders why no one shows up for their home games. i give you exhibit #4,357.

sorry for all the negativity but this is beyond pathetic.

i wouldn't have a problem if they were just shooting poorly. that's to be expected from time to time, especially in a trap game like tonight. but they are getting manhandled on the boards, failing to rotate on defense, and just generally being outworked in all facets of the game. it's inexcusable. i guess they really don't give a shit about that 5th seed.

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Real and Speightacular on Mar 25 at 20:44
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Terrible shooting by Thad and Iggy, but they're still in this game. Let's see how this goes...

ok they really turned up the defensive intensity the last few minutes of the 3rd. they should be able to cruise to a W now, but who the hell knows.

another 20pt game for Thad.

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Real and Speightacular on Mar 25 at 20:52
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Here we go. End of third, Thad with 20 points, 2 boards, 3 steals... Sixers now up 65-62. They're doin it at the line. Don't look now, but I think a team identity is forming. Be interesting to see if Donyell makes it in for a few, just to shake things up.a

"Don't look now, but I think a team identity is forming"

are you deducing this from tonight's game? how so?

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Real and Speightacular reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 20:57
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No deduction (as if that can be quantified anyway). Pure gut. Feel free to ignore ;-)

I'm glad Ratliff and Marshall have gotten minutes in this game. You don't have to play well every game but good teams must find a way to win more often than not.

Hope they can pull this one out of the fire.

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Real and Speightacular on Mar 25 at 21:04
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Evans with 10mins of burn... 0 boards, 0 points (0 attempts), 0 everything except for 1 foul. He must be doin great stuff that the boxscore can't capture. ;-)

i actually do think evans has played well tonight. he's doing a great job of boxing out which has allowed our guards to scoop up a bunch of rebounds.

IVEY EN FUEGO!!!

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Real and Speightacular on Mar 25 at 21:06
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76-69 Philly... 7:45 to go...

they're doing a great job of securing just about every defensive rebound now. you can thank mr. ratliff for that.

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Mike reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 21:08
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and miller as well. he did the same thing the other night portland.

Ratliff, despite his age, remains such an influence on the defensive end. It's great having a guy like him around to contribute, hopefully Speights and Thad can pick these up from Theo.

how great is it to see Thad getting to the line so frequently?

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Real and Speightacular reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 21:17
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Bingo.

There's your identity.

yea i was gonna say, i thought you meant that they play lockdown D & get to the foul line. i just didn't get how that epiphany came about tonight. but i gotcha.

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Real and Speightacular reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 21:22
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I don't know about the lockdown D bit, I don't know if they can get that consistently yet, but if you look at Thad's game log and count the number of games he went to the line 4+ times in January, February and month to date... see a trend? Dude's finding himself. Watchout when he gets to play the 3 on the regular.

oh so you meant Thad is forming an identity. well yea this is what his 5th game in a row with 20+ pts?

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Real and Speightacular reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 21:38
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Well, both. DiLeo's figured out this team's best chances to win (the line) and Thad's realizing waitaminute, these guys can't guard me! lol

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Chris reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 21:40
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If he keeps getting to the line more often, especially like tonight, he'll be one of the elite scorers in the league. Yes, that'll meet John's definition of elite. ;-)

He does need to keep working on rebounding, assisting and defending. Really, the progress he's made so far has been quite remarkable. When he got drafted there were a lot of complaints about them not taking Al Thornton and Nick Young. I haven't heard any complaints of that sort lately.

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Real and Speightacular on Mar 25 at 21:13
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81-72 Philly... Ratliff boarding well... Evans still on the floor, now with 1 board and 2 fouls. Boxscore-proof goodness (or is he the +/- beneficiary of everyone else's work?)

I love that they have kept going to Thad today, even when his shot wasn't exactly falling the first half. One thing is clear though - they have absolutely no way of stopping him getting into great positions. The one thing that jumps out in the box score is Thad's +19.

As Brian has said, this is not the kind of game to put Reggie in. Stick Speights or Daly in there, at least there's a better chance they'll make their free throws.

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Mike reply to Alvin on Mar 25 at 21:22
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i dunno i really thought evans played well at the end of the 3rd and then the beginning of the 4th. he was playing strong defense & pinning his man from getting to the glass, which is why lou & miller have a combined 12 rebounds. he did lose craig smith on that 1 play though.

one of the best things about iguodala this season is that he can shoot like absolute dog shit for 3 quarters, and then nail just about everything when it counts in the 4th

The moment they take Theo out, Craig Smith scores off an offensive rebound. Are they actually going with Evans at the 5 again???

I'm not surprised that Rodney Carney is killing us from downtown. Just like Matt Barnes did a couple weeks ago.

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Real and Speightacular on Mar 25 at 21:24
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3 mins left, Philly up 7...Ivey's in for Lou (his work here is done)

MIAMI LOSES TO INDY

Why is Evans on the court at this time instead of Daly or Theo?

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Real and Speightacular reply to Alvin on Mar 25 at 21:31
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Exactly. If Philly wins it's in SPITE of Evans, not because of him. DiLeo, DiLeo, DiLeo...

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Real and Speightacular reply to Real and Speightacular on Mar 25 at 21:32
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And of course the second I say that, Reggie gets a steal ;-)

Same shit happened to me with my next comment. Haha.

Not very good offense there. Not one of Reggie's better nights. I shouldn't be surprised that it's only us here that notice it.

Guys relax. The team has been gone for 9 days with a 7 to 8 hour flight early Tues. morning with a 3 hour loss of time on top of that. The legs, body, and the mind can't feel but so good after all of that. And the energy expended in that OT Portland game.

Good win tonight considering.

A win is a win is a win!

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Real and Speightacular on Mar 25 at 21:42
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I think it's a pretty solid win. A win they were "supposed" to have, but when the shots weren't falling they didn't go soft and fold, they turned it around like good teams usually do.

Good win. Confidence begets confidence. I dare say the team is gelling/maturing/hardening right before our very eyes. Witness.

Just need a good coach next year.

"...they didn't go soft and fold.."

Spot on.

No matter how it looks, they are always resilient and competitive which they definitely displayed in the 2nd half tonight.

It's nice that Thad's making all these offensive strides, but it would be cool if he could score and rebound at the same time.

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Bryon reply to Tray on Mar 25 at 21:59
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Hard to be in position to rebound when he spends so much time during the game leaking out on the break gobbling up some of those points.

His rebounding is critiqued too much when taking into account how much he fills the wing on breaks.

Are they still "not calling plays for Thad?"

Great to see him break out. I think he could have been called on more earlier this year (with some, you know, plays...), but he's doing it now, when it counts the most.

I'm hoping this mean he is their go to offensive player from here on (and next year.) This can still be Iguodala's team, but Thad should be the focal point of the offense.

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Real and Speightacular on Mar 25 at 22:04
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"I'm hoping this mean he is their go to offensive player from here on (and next year.)"

I think/hope that's exactly what'll happen. I think Iggy's more comfortable being the super facilitator who will (want to) take over from time to time. Thad is looking comfortable as that go-to guy.

On Evans, I think there are some games, matchup dependent, where he's going to do ok, but most games he's not going to be terribly effective. I still say Speights would be a bigger net positive in his place.

Is Sam going in the tank again? Nothing's more maddening than an erratic starter.

He grimaced a couple of times tonight while shaking his right hand. Think it may be injured or he banged it up tonight. He had a wrap on something tonight too (wrist or hand, not sure).

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Mike reply to Bryon on Mar 25 at 22:18
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yea his hand has been hurting, and it looked like he tweaked it again tonight

They are 24-13 since january 3rd, and it's not like they have the best talent out there. Do you really think there is an available coach out there that would be doing better??

Hey, isn't that the logic that got Mo and extension ;)

yea i'm not sure where the dileo hate comes from. for a guy who hasn't coached in like 2 decades, working with a very limited roster, he's done a pretty fantastic job imo.

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Real and Speightacular reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 22:48
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How is this a "very limited" roster? Isn't this essentially the same one that made the playoffs last year? It's not that bad. Especially when you consider the competition in the East (tho, yes, it's gotten a lil tougher).

It's not easy to quantify how much difference a coach can make, especially when you talk about things like motivating the squad, smoothing out personality clashes, etc. But I mean more in the Xs and Os sense. Who to play when and wot not. I don't think this guy has it.

I'll give him credit for figuring out an overarching strategy tho (get to the line!).

"for a guy who hasn't coached in like 2 decades..."

And why would I want a guy like like that clearing off his rust on my team again?

what i meant by limited roster: one of the youngest in the league, the worst 3pt shooting team in the league, no real PF with thad playing out of position. for awhile he had Sam playing the best ball of his career (clearly something Dileo was doing with him was clicking). no #1 guy, the list goes on... yea they were a playoff team last season but with a losing record. you are right about his lack of experience as a coach though, i'm not sure why i included that. for awhile he was drawing up plays out of timeouts that were consistently getting us layups, sometimes alley-oops (not sure where that type of play-calling has gone though, we haven't seen it in awhile). and i like what he's doing with the rotations, except for sitting iguodala for long stretches in the 4th; he should be sitting him at the end of the 3rd & then the first 2-3min of the 4th, like what phil jackson does with kobe.

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Mike reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 23:02
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and i'm not saying he's a great coach, or even the right coach for this team. but i don't see how coaching is a problem right now, or even the 2nd, 3rd, or 4th main issue. the bottom line is that since he took over this team has been winning.

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Bryon reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 23:11
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Most of the time he is resting Miller during this time you speak of and he wants to keep one Andre on the floor so that is why he leaves Iggy out there until he brings Miller back sometime in middle of the 4th quarter.

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Mike reply to Bryon on Mar 25 at 23:16
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yea that's true. i don't know what the solution is but imo he can't have iguodala sitting out so much of the final quarter. now that thad is emerging perhaps it won't be as problematic.

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Bryon reply to Mike on Mar 25 at 23:29
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Yea it worries me pretty bad too when he takes out Iggy right in the middle of crunch time, but it has seemed to work well since most of the bench is out there to start the 4th (including Iggy) with Iggy offering, at least, some semblance of offense.

orlando held on and now have the 2 seed over boston

Mo, although a great guy, probably deserved to go.

The stats state:

-He was not a good coach last year until Stefanski took over and demanded that he play up tempo and play the young guys. They turned it around.
-It is my understanding that he wanted to fix the team around Brand this year, and it was his decision to slow the offense down a bit.

Dileo immediately stuck to what he knew would work. Sometimes his rotations are questionable but honestly we'd have something to complain about pretty much every game no matter who was doing the subbing.

I think this guy has earned another year.

I was at the game tonite. A few thoughts:

1. This, by far, was the worst ref game I have ever been at this year. They were very inconsistent. The sixers, after accepting it, adjusted.

2. They were stone cold in shooting. IF it was not for Thad and the 2nd team, it was a lost.

3. Lou drove the ball is when the turn around came. Then others started driving.

4. Reggie would have cost them the game if it was longer, he was horrible at the end (along w/ Sammy regressing for a few games....). Why Theo was not returned, I wonder why......

5. Their Defense in the 2nd half was good but there still was way too many open 3's. When Royal hit his 2, he was glued to an Defender 24/7 on the offense. Sixers don't get it.

Just finished watching the game, good comments here guys, thanks for keeping the discussion going in my absence. A win is a win is a win, and this one wasn't really in question for most of the second half. Once the Sixers got close you knew it was a foregone conclusion.

How huge was that Indy win over Miami? Whole new ballgame, fellas. The Sixers now control their own destiny for the #5 seed.

Few things

Mo Cheeks has never been a good coach in my opinion - he never should have been hired

Not only is DiLeo a mediocre coach - him being head coach hurts a real strength for the sixers - the scouting and drafting - that's what DiLeo used to do before he was given the (money saving?) head coaching job. I worry about the draft this year because DiLeo isn't there to work.

Reggie Evans is horrible more often than he's not horrible.

There were two things I asked Jordan to look at at the half - rebounding a 3 point shooting - the 3 point shooting defense didn't improve greatly in the second half (from 6-12 to 6-15) but the rebounding percentage on the defensive glass was much better in the second half.

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