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Iverson Is Back

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JohnMagee on Dec 2 at 11:07
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But Brian

I hope younger Sixers don't learn from AIs Wouldnt want them playing their asses off + getting crowd fired up

January 10 is the next deadline - that's when Iversons contract becomes guaranteed, so still some hope

My new proposal: Iggy/Iverson/Thad/Brand/Dalembert, basically hoping Iggy can be the new Eric Snow. This, IMO, is a much better alternative to the small ball lineup.

AI is a 2, the best way to use him is as a 2 with a big point. We all know EJ hates Jrue's guts so it'll either be Green or Iggy starting with Iverson. Iggy can actually defend and he handles the ball as well as anyone on the team (bar AI). Sure he has been forcing things recently but he won't have to that much with Iverson around, and even Iggy at his turnover worst is a better PG option than Green.

This is what you have to hope for as the starting lineup. I have no confidence we'll see it. I'm actually a little worried about tonight, I could see Jordan saying something like "Brand was really effective off the bench" and keeping the small ball lineup in place, maybe even for the rest of the season with Lou and AI starting together when Lou comes back.

Defense? Your talking defense???

As in Randy Ayers defense? AI/Ayers/Defense all like peas in a pod.

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Statman on Dec 2 at 11:34
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Forgetting defense for a moment (seems to be the theme of this year anyway), here are my thoughts:

(1) I've got to think this is the end of the Princeton offense. Not only is Iverson not familiar with the offense, it doesn't play to his strengths anyway. As we were discussing yesterday, the PO favors good jump shooters, and Iverson has never (even in his prime) been a pure jump shooter.

(2) I saw one of Iverson's Memphis games, and one thing he can still do well [he shot 57% in those games] is stop on a dime, go up with balance, and get off a good shot. For the current Sixers like Iguodala, Thad, and Lou, their jumper percentage goes way down if their feet aren't set [just my observation, don't have stats to back it up].

(3) The chemistry with Iguodala will be one thing to watch closely from the start. Who gets the ball to initiate plays in the halfcourt? For that matter, who is the point guard? And who gets the ball on the outlet for the break? They didn't leave on the best of terms, and it may not take much for things to go sour again.

(4) I do fear that Thad could get lost in the offense. If Iverson gets his touches and Iguodala gets his touches, Thad might become like Iguodala was in 05-06, standing in the corner while Iverson and Webber did their thing. Hopefully that's not the case.

Finally, one quick comment on defense: from about 05-06 on, Iverson didn't even bother with defense. If we thought Andre Miller and Lou Williams were bad at stopping dribble penetration, wait until we see a few games of Iverson. It could get ugly!

Yup, I think we'll probably see the PO for the next two games, then who knows what. Probably Iverson dribbling the ball for about 15 seconds out of every shot clock.

Outside of the PO, what does Eddie Jordan bring to the table? I mean, this magical system will have lasted 20 games into his tenure with the team and now all we're left with is a head coach who doesn't care about defense at all.

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Statman reply to Brian on Dec 2 at 11:51
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and now all we're left with is a head coach who doesn't care about defense at all.

LOL! That would be a great first line on a resume.

"Yup, I think we'll probably see the PO for the next two games, then who knows what. Probably Iverson dribbling the ball for about 15 seconds out of every shot clock."

Have we actually seen the princeton offense yet?

If you count 10,000 dribble hand-offs accomplishing next-to-nothing and about 5 backdoor passes (4 of which were thrown by Sam Dalembert), then yes. We've seen it.

That's exactly right. The "4 dribble hand-offs at the top of the key in a row to setup the Bill Green isolation contested 20 footer" has been about the most offensive philosophy I've seen on the team.

I think AI and Speights will be a good combo. Guess we will have to wait a while.

I'm interested to see how Iguodala adapts to having another scorer on the floor. It could be a good or a bad thing.

Overall, adding AI is interesting...

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Statman reply to tk76 on Dec 2 at 11:49
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I'm interested to see how Iguodala adapts to having another scorer on the floor. It could be a good or a bad thing.

One of the ESPN guys mentioned that Iguodala doesn't need a lot of touches to be effective, which is true if you think about it (how many of us have said he would be more effective as the #2 guy? -- well, he just went back to that). He certainly won't be "trying to do too much" now. On the other hand, Iguodala has the well-known propensity to "float" and do nothing if he isn't directly involved in the offense. So, good or bad, as you say.

Overall, adding AI is interesting...

Love or hate the move, we'll all be watching on Monday, won't we?

Yep. I've moved past the debate (was against the signing) and am ready to see what happens next.

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JohnMagee on Dec 2 at 12:02
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Love or hate the move, we'll all be watching on Monday, won't we?

Not unless ESPN bumps it to national coverage, this signing made my decision NOT to get league pass this year and I've pretty much given up on the sixers for this season. This is a PR move (and the fact that the sixers web site is locked up from ticket sales and the insanely overly positive twitterverse response, seems like a good one) to me pure and simple. This isn't a move that helps the sixers build towards winning a championship. Oh boy, maybe they make the playoffs again as a 7/8 seed and get their assses handed to them on a plate, again, and they get that 'playoff experience' everyone keeps telling me is so important.

To me this season was about the development of players and learning Jordans new offense, well they haven't learned jack squat yet and the arrival of Iverson means that the PO is a thing of the past, it probably means less minutes for Jrue now and even less when Lou's jaw heels and if anyone thinks that having a ball hog shoot first worry about my points and steals first everything else second player on the floor is good for anyone, well, I'm going to disagree with you.

W/L were never that important to me this year, but this move just kills any positivity I could look for this year because it totally screws both the PO and development of young players who now will kknow the joy Andre Iguodala knew of trying to become an NBA player while playing with one of the most selfish players in the history of the league.

I'm sure everyone else looks at it differently, I'm sure if they get to 500 and lose in the first round it'll be deemed a success...but this will be a team no closer to winning an NBA title than it was at the end of last season.

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Tray reply to JohnMagee on Dec 2 at 12:22
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"Not unless ESPN bumps it to national coverage, this signing made my decision NOT to get league pass this year and I've pretty much given up on the sixers for this season."

A perfectly reasonable view if the only reason you watch the Sixers is to see them evolve into (hopefully) a championship team one day, but understand that virtually no one else in the world exclusively watches basketball for those reasons, that people watch sports, in large part, for the human drama of it all, and that anyone in Philly who ever cared about the Sixers or the NBA will be tuned in Monday night. Just for the sake of the spectacle, or out of sentiment, or whatever.

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JohnMagee reply to Tray on Dec 2 at 12:24
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Anyone who wasn't watching the sixers before monday night, as far as i'm concerned, doesn't actually care about the sixers...they care about Iverson and points and who cares if they win or lose...comcast gets exactly what they want out of this but the franchise considers to be shuffling towards armageddon and perpetaul mediocrity which i'm not going to shell out extra money to endure...there's no joy in watching a team going nowhere

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Tray reply to JohnMagee on Dec 2 at 13:12
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There are different degrees of caring. If you think a team's really bad, you can stop caring. Many people felt this team was headed towards perpetual mediocrity before this move. Now they'll be interesting and mediocre.

Agree. You can be a casual fan. That's what I am for the Phillies. You get less enjoyment out of it when they win, but its also less of an emotional/time investment.

I don't have the time to follow other teams as closely as the Sixers. But that does not me I'm not a fan. I wouldn't call myself more of a Utley or Howard fan than I am a Phillies fan.

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bebopdeluxe reply to Tray on Dec 2 at 20:06
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Tray:

Thanks for summing up EXACTLY where I am with this thing. I was preparing for two seasons of watching games like Malcolm McDowell in "A Clockwork Orange" watched violence while listening to Beethoven's 9th...

The sad thing is that this team has the most talented roster it has had in a decade - it's a shame we don't have a coach.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?page=Roundtable-Iverson-091202

Stein was 6 for 6 with the exception of us maybe snagging the 8th spot if things fall our way.

Awful basketball decision. Loved AI, still do.
But saying you want to win then acting completely differently is just classic.

Regardless. EJ still has to go. I am livid today as you said Brian, management firmly stated that our pockets are more important than winning and the future of this team.

One possible weird worst-case:

By marginalizing the PO, you can pray that this means they might focus a bit more on defensive strategy. Also, one can also pray that it could potentially soon mean the end of the EJ era, since the Silver Bullet he was brought here to implement was just tossed out the window.

W/O the panacea of the PO, EJ is an anti-defense version of Mo/DiLeo.

I love Iverson (he was the reason I started watched basketball in the first place), I was against him coming back, but of course I'll support him.

Brian, your post actually gave me hope. What if they do completely abandon the PO? Maybe this is the catalyst/excuse Jordan was waiting for to change things up? The team could work to AI3's strengths and maybe even spend so time on defense?

Maybe???

(This is the most hope I've had for this team so far this season).

(Although based on what we've seen from EJ so far, it doesn't seem like he's ever admitted to a mistake in his life).

Call me sentimental, but I'm THRILLED A.I. is back! The Sixers will be worth more than a 15 minute look see now that the answer has returned!

Brian, did you hear that Lou Williams went off like a pre-school kid throwing a temper tantrum at the A.I. signing?! He even locked out Philly fans in his Twitter account.

For those on Twitter, you can follow AI at Twitter.com under @alleniverson. (I'm there too at JAJinPA... will need help getting caught up in the once again wonderful world of NBA basketball....HELP PLEASE! )

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