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Game Four, Sixers vs. Magic

I believe this is the series. If the sixers win it, we will win in Florida on Tuesday. If they lose it, we will be down to game 7.

Jeez - the pistons just went downhill quickly - that team will be majorly overhauled this off season

TNT Pregame 'introduction' to the game - all about the magic

You utter tools

Hooters music - on TNT - that's just awesome

that's okay...there is no 76er in the TNT intro. No respect....earn it tonight boys

it sounds quiet...come on home crowd!!!!!

All those empty seats - so utterly pathetic

I'm not liking this start - the Magic seem to be getting away with things that they shouldn't be allowed to get away with on the road

courtney lee being treated like dwayne wade

drive the lane!!! get some fouls!!!!

Struggling on offense early on, but creating turnovers with good hustle.

Dwight Howard has gotten away with 2 fouls and a travel in under six minutes

I can already SEE how this game is going to go -

howard pushes Young down no foul?

John reply to Dave on Apr 26 at 18:52

Well he is superman

Offense is poor, nothing but jump shots.

We have to expect the refs to go against us. It's the 'World vs. Us' mentality that can get us through this series.

a post up play for Dalembert out of the timeout?

Jesus this lack of foul calling is pathetic

There we go, Iggy.

In case the Magic didn't know, they are in for a war in this series. The Sixers are not gonna let up, and it starts on defense.


Damn right, come on Willie, we need you!!

Best place to watch the game streaming online???

marshall at center end of quarter....had the look just didn't go down....i will take that shot!

Could be worse i guess - crappy officiating - flat team - magic shooting 71% - down 2 is an achievement?

We're just not getting it done offensively. Hopefully Lou can have one of his better games.

Howard has got lots of help from his teammates so far. We need the Andres and the bench to step it up. We're only 2 down which isn't too bad. We can win this if we find a way to score.

John reply to Alvin on Apr 26 at 19:09

They might be able to win this if the refs start calling some fouls on the magic - it's ridiculous

Just show up Lou. Willie already has 8....

This dwight howard nonsense is ridiculous - dude travels more than kareem did on the sky hook - and leads with his shoulder every time

Howard turns around uses the ball to push defender out of the spot then once he does he gets a free look...this is more like an offensive lineman than a basketball player

I do not like this line up....nice LOU!!!!!

Dwight Howard is allowed to make moving picks it seems

IVey with the steal!

come on LOu

Lou, you have to take JJ to the hole. Come on. Don't settle.

Howard out for 3 minutes...not a lot of great offensive possessions

It's early but the FT and foul disparity is just ridiculous

Its as if the refs decided they will only call a foul when theo or sam try to push back on howard after he illegally pushes them...other than that hit away on all drives to the lane...star protection right there

Passing to reggie evans should be an immediate fine and benching

another no call on a charge

get reggie out...get Lou out...get Iggy in and get sammy in

John reply to Dave on Apr 26 at 19:33

Sammy's got two fouls - dileo wa0n't bring him back - but speights or ratliff have to get in there - i mean they can't be WORSE at stopping howard can they?

I guess on the bright side - the sixers have been godawful and are still in the game

DiLeo: 'get back on D in transition, make them have to earn it in the half-court'.

ANother foul that howard gets away with - what's that like 4?

Reggies form is god awful on a 'jumper'

You know what - with the horrible shooting by the sixers, crappy officiating, and hot shooting by the magic - being tied at the half is an accomplishment

Reg has been huge holding the fort down with Daly and Theo in foul trouble. No significant lead lost.

Have to ride Iggy and Miller in the 2nd half. How long can we play this consistent on D and continue to hold them down w/o scoring much ourselves...

Lets gooooo

John reply to Bryon on Apr 26 at 19:49

Howard abused reggie on both ends of the floor - the magic stop going to howard - not sure how reggie gets credit for that

No wonder why they don't want this series on national TV That was one ugly half of basketball.

Hopefully they can find some kind of rhythm in the 2nd half.

agree. It's an achievement just to tie the game. You can feel the League's desire to give this one to the Magic. Just frustrating.

the sixers being tied at the half is great news given the ridiculous number of missed open jumpers; hopefully in the 2nd half the shots will start falling and the crowd will get going and we'll take this thing.

You had to figure the Sixers could not keep shooting hot every half- but they made up for it from 3pts.

I just figured the Sixers could find a better rhythm at home. I hoping the Andre's step up in the 3rd quarter.

John reply to Nick on Apr 26 at 19:52

The refs might start calling fouls on the magic

If all the fouls on howard had been called I believe hed' be out of the game already

Call a TO to stem this tide.

You're OK, just take this hit. Keep going to the rim and just make your free throws.

Damn it Willie.

Damn, gave up 4 pts in the last 40 sec. ugh

What a stinker.

Players gotta know that if we lose this game we give up the advantage that we've earned thus far. Leave it all out on the court now. We need both Andres to step it up. Please stop shooting jumpers, take it to the hoop.

We've only been to the line seven times...

Howard was not shooting that ball was he? Come on...

Come on 3 fouls on them with 9 to go..

OMG make the damn free throws, damn it!

Magic have 0 offensive boards.

Miller has been nothing but money tonight, on switches resulting from the high screens the magic set. He's even held his own in the post a couple of times when they had mismatches.

Let's just not foul them getting them closer to the penalty, if we do, just make sure the foul is on Howard.

And if Sam's shoulder can stand it, get him back in the game. Now.

I don't mind having Marshall in there at all, but I think we need Young in the game, no?

Get Daly back in the game.

If we lose this one we need a 2-hour free throw shooting practice. God, it's been a problem all year and you still don't wanna sort it out in the playoffs?

They have to get it to around 5 by the 2 min TO to have a chance...just bear down...

i wonder if DiLeo would get Marshall in at this point. 77-67, with 5:13 to go. We need some firepower right about now.

we are shying away. you have to utiliize our athletism (thad, ai) and lou's quickness. Go into him. Create contact. Even if a no call, just make it known that we are going to be aggressive and not back down.

Secondly, when a shot blocked leave dwight, why does igoudala/ weak side defender just stand there? Seriously, put a body on him. I understand he is a man-child, but we are just playing so soft and i hate it.

Third, I know I just went off on how soft we are, but take a charge on Howard. Reggie's pitful attempt in the first half was just plain awful. Use howard's aggressiveness and strenght against him. Use basketball IQ. Don't flop. Just stand ground and if he squarely goes into your chest, take the charge.

This is driving me crazy. A solid opportunity at 3-1 and just letting it go. We are not shooting well, but the lack of intelligence and aggressiveness is unbelievable. Don't even get me started on the defensive miscues/ope-man switches...

This is all you can ask for... it's for the taking. Go get it!

Thad just beared down...

Come on Iggy, don't settle for the 3's

Slammin Sammy!

Tie game. Please, PLEASE don't leave anyone open. I'm okay with a contested jumper but please, don't leave an open shot.

Finally, no 1-4 iso, and it was easy.

Poor defense by Thad.

Bryon reply to Joe on Apr 26 at 21:29

He acted as if he was playing him for the drive. Soon as Hedo paused over there before pulling up, Thad should have went right up on him and bodied him. Hope he doesn't go by you esp. with a gimpy ankle, if he does your help will be there.

Fuck. Fuck. Fuck.

Damn it.

That's the playoffs. They obviously aren't better than us, as I stated from the beginning. Yeah it was crucial to cast aside an opportunity, but winning down there isn't insurmountable.

I would have been okay with Green, Young or Marshall taking that shot but no, we had to go to Iggy again.

That's two games we've given away now in a series we should have won by now. Damn it. Screw this team.

Fuck this agony that I let this team put me through.

Turkoglu's shot...i don't know. Mush be a matter of confidence. They pick and roll'd to switch Iguodala off him, and he made that shot. There wasn't much Thad could do because Turkoglu could've gone for a 2 or a 3.

You know what? At this point I just don't want a repeat of last year. I want the sixers to win at least the 6th game, but preferably just end the series at home.

I'm just as psyched for game 5 as I was for today's, but the thing that eats at my craw is Willie and Sammy had 21 combined and we lost. Ugh.

But there is a tomorrow.

DiLeo: '..we know we have to win 1 game in ORL and we feel we can do that, being in 2 games down there already'.


They could have simply gone for the win or tie holding for the last shot.

Why would you want to give the other team 12 seconds to beat you and then still face OT even if you get the stop.

You have a chnce to hold on for the last shot and maybe the win... you play for the win.

Bryon reply to tk76 on Apr 26 at 21:57

You're not really giving the other team 12 seconds to beat you when you are the ones that are down two points. You had to get it tied first before those 12 seconds can be considered.

You can't possibly go for the win, with these guys lack of acumen from 3 pt land. Have to go for 2 and if not, then a chance to foul.

We just will have to disagree on that one. Not the time to 'play for the tie.'

You don't have to shoot a 3 if it is not there, but no reason to go for the quick 2. So you tie it, you still give the other team a chance to beat you then or in OT.

The added advantage of being able to foul if you miss an early quick shot is not nearly as good as the chance to actually win the game (or score a 2 for OT without handing the ball back to the other team.)

Bryon reply to tk76 on Apr 26 at 22:10

Scoring to tie it up and 'being able to foul' is an 'advantage.'

'A chance' is nothing but a shot that still hasn't been taken.

Give me a scenario where taking an early 2pt shot for the tie ends up with a win. It will have a lot of ifs (hit the shot, get a stop without fouling, win in overtime.)

As opposed to just holding for the last shot... You design a good play and you can get a win right there. The game is in your hands and you only have to score once and you don't have to stop anyone. Also, I'm pretty sure that there would always be an easy 2pt bucket, since the Magic will be trying to deny the 3 ball.

Why else do teams hold for the last shot to end every quarter? By you logic they should just take the forst good shot.

Bryon reply to tk76 on Apr 26 at 22:33

Nothing personal but, I believe you thought this team was doomed because of the abberation that was the last Nets game and now you're telling me that you have confidence that, not only getting a good look from three, but someone on this current roster making one.

But under your premise of 'a lot of ifs', only having to score once, as you say, is still an 'if.'

"Why else do teams hold for the last shot to end every quarter? By you logic they should just take the forst good shot."

-Because there are more quarters to go, this was the end of the game.

Bryon reply to tk76 on Apr 26 at 22:13

And another thing, it isn't about the 'quick 2', at that point it's about the most available 2. You're playing from behind.

I can see both sides. I just would rather lose on a shot that can win it then have it play out like it did. They had themselves in a bit of a hole either way.

Bryon reply to tk76 on Apr 26 at 22:39

You have to extend it. You can never 'rather lose.' Why play?

I mean, the shot you are critiquing was a dunk, the highest percentage shot available.

100% agree with Bryon here. If you wind it down to the last second you're putting yourself in an overtime or lose situation with no outs, probably on a shot with less than 50% chance of going in, since you've let the shot clock run all the way down. If you're shooting for the win, then you're talking about a 34% shot, at best, under good circumstances, to win the game. I'll take the 95% shot with 14 seconds left on the clock to tie every day of the week and twice on Sunday.

Like I said in my wrap, Hedo has shot 20% from three for a month, he was a step behind the line, and Thad was in his face (even if not RIGHT in his face). Sometimes players beat the odds, give Hedo credit, go down to Orlando and take game 5.

One other thing, criticisms aside, that writer the other day that said Tony needs the job could be called premature but add me to the list, too.

I want to keep him; with adding the piece we never had and offseason changes, I think he can excel. I ride his ass, which is expected, but the guy and his gang of assistants are savvy, to say the least.

The only thing we have to complain about this game, besides poor shooting (at least in 2 point range) was Thad's defense. He's young so you can't get too mad, but my god that was a mistake tactically. you have to be IN HIS FACE. especially when the clock hit 4 or 5. At least make a jab at hedo to throw him off rythm.

Tony DiLeo has done nothing to prove he's a long term solution as a head coach - he's constantly out coached - he constantly makes bad substitutions and he doesn't know how to properly use the assets he has, nor does he know how to help this team make adjustments at half time.

Not only that - he's the best talent evaluator the team has - putting him at head coach hurts the team on and off the court...only reason to keep him at head coach is tto save money

I am definitely perplexed at how awful they are in the 3rd quarters. I realize they are as good in the 4ths as they've been bad in the 3rds, but bad 3rd quarters scare the hell out of me coaching wise...

He goes by the name Willie Green... and he is your worst nightmare.

He goes by the name Willie Green... and he is your worst nightmare.

Bryon reply to Mike W. on Apr 26 at 23:11

That isn't coaching. That is merely execution, or lack thereof, on both ends of the floor. I pin it on the players.

We just held these guys to 84 pts. Not being funny in any way, but Tony can't score.

You better believe they respect us now. Don't know if that is good or bad, we'll see.

But the subdued and complimentary Dwight on the post-game podium tonight is a world apart from the 'we just coughed one up, these guys can't handle us' grandiose Dwight after game 1.

Tom Moore on Apr 26 at 23:20

Thought it was interesting that Turkoglu said his winning shot was designed for whoever Young guarded (either him or Lewis).

Turkoglu had eight field goals in Game 4 after seven combined in the first three.

That says much, much more about Iguodala than it does Thad. It should also be some extra motivation for the kid.

tough loss tonight, but I'm feeling good about our team. i'm glad we're sticking to the defensive game plan of single coverage on howard - only problem is that we can't afford to have lapses or letdowns like in the 3rd quarter especially when we're not shooting the ball well. that said, we were still right there in the end, gotta give turk credit for hitting the shot. great rebounding tonight; i'd like to see more drives to the basket, maybe get howard in foul trouble. gotta contain rashard and courtney lee, and sammy's gotta not pick up bad fouls -- his defensive rebounding and shotblocking are vital. with 3 of 4 games decided at the buzzer, probably no reason to expect anything different the rest of the way. stay strong sixers fans -- we're gonna do this!

Bryon reply to Nick on Apr 27 at 1:14

Good post.

Sammy can't let that injury deter him. He grimaced several times tonight. On that Hedo drive late in the 4th where he made a layup and got fouled, but missed the free throw, Sam tried to block that with his left hand instead of his right which he very rarely does. You could make the argument that he went with the left hand to prevent from fouling Hedo who was on Sam's right side, but he clearly wasn't trying to use his dominant arm. He has to gut it out b/c the alternative provides no chance.

Hang in there peeps, have confidence like most of our players look like they have. They know they have the Magic's number and so do I, now whether that translates to the coveted two wins is, at best, a toss up.

Tonight was the first time that I felt that DiLeo made a serious blunder. Throughout almost the entire 3rd quarter, Willie Green was being switched onto Rashard Lewis. Lewis has a whopping 7" height advantage on Willie, so he just faced up and shot jumpers over him, going 4-5 from the field and scoring 11 points in the quarter.

It's no surprise that the worst +/- for any player in the game belonged to Willie Green (-12), but what is so frustrating is that the best +/- of the game belonged to the guy who should have had Willie's minutes; Lou Williams. In just 21 minutes, Lou was +11.

Meanwhile, Thad Young for some reason played 43 minutes. He was clearly gassed by the 4th quarter, when he went 0/2 from the field and was singled out by the Magic as the defender to attack on their final play. When you watch Thad day in and day out, you can see he is often fatigued by the end of games, and that's playing 34 minutes a night.

That's all I've got for now.

Bryon reply to noah on Apr 27 at 1:28

But how can that be a blunder when that was the gameplan all night. They switched everything on the perimeter, which cut off the majority of the Magic's penetration and breaking down of our defense. Everyone switched tonight except for our center, if he even came out to the perimeter.

You have to chalk that up to good offense when the opposing team runs you off picks, knowing you are switching, trying to get the mismatch. If you try to counter by bringing in, basically, your only other option in Ivey, then with switching occurring you still end up with the same mismatch and height advantage on Ivey, because Lou can't even be considered here as small as he is. So it makes no sense to say that Lou should have gotten Willie's minutes when your premise was that Lewis had a height advantage over Willie.

The +/-'s have no bearing here. Too many variables.

noah reply to Bryon on Apr 27 at 13:02

My premise is not that Lou should have been guarding Rashard, but rather that no guard should be switched on to him at all.

Switching to stop penetration makes sense, but not against the Magic; with Jameer out, they don't have the quickness to penetrate against our defense. Courtney Lee is the only player they have that can get to the basket on his own. Of course, last night, with all the switching, Turkoglu was also able to penetrate with ease.

Yes, we held them to 84 points. However, I don't credit great defense, I credit the slow pace. The Magic took only 70 shots after averaging 76 shots in the previous 3 games. They committed the second fewest turnovers and shot the second highest percentage of the 4 games so far. Our defense last night was arguably the weakest of the series.

The game was slower, 86 possessions (all the other games were 90 possessions). But Orlando's offense was actually the worst they've had the entire series w/ and offensive rating of 97.7. The Sixers offense was just worse than that at 94.2.

Here's the game-by-game breakdown...

Game 1
- 90 possessions
- ORL offensive rating: 108.9
- PHI offensive rating: 111.1

Game 2
- 90 possessions
- ORL offensive rating: 108.3
- PHI offensive rating: 97.1

Game 3
- 90 possessions
- ORL offensive rating: 104.4
- PHI offensive rating: 106.7

Game 4
- 86 possessions
- ORL offensive rating: 97.7
- PHI offensive rating: 94.2

Bryon reply to noah on Apr 27 at 16:36

It's kind of a double edged sword though if you don't switch. You try to go under the screen then you give up a good look at a three pointer. They may not have the quickness to penetrate, but you try to go over the screen and then the penetration is easier to occur resulting in a broken down defense.

It's a good point, but when you hold a team to 84 points, I can't really nitpick any defensive strategy decisions.

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