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Elton Brand Is A Man

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Kenneth on Dec 29 at 0:41
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Again, your analysis is right on the mark Brian.

Elton Brand changed the dynamics of the game. There was simply no answer for him on the offensive end.

On the defensive end, he played tough defense, he didn't slack off and never took a play off. He was aggressive in the offensive and defensive glass and very active.

It's time for EJ to realize that he can't win w/o getting his talented big-men involved. Both Dalembert and Brand punished the smaller Portland lineup. Juwan Howard, Pendegraph, and Aldridge got beaten up badly tonight.

This is a tough Portland team...they are talented and a very good team. If EJ wants to win against quality teams like their last 2 big wins against good teams (Portland, Boston), he'll need Elton and Sammy to be very involved and get big minutes.

Honestly, I think Jordan's too stubborn to play the right lineups. Brand forced his hand by being red hot right from the time he set foot on the floor tonight, but he's going to fall right back into his patterns.

Like I said earlier this week, I expect the Sixers to make some kind of late run to get them to 30 wins (for better or worse.)

Three years ago the run was made with Andre Miller and Joe Smith providing veteran leadership to help pull out close games. This year could it be Iverson and Brand?

Good win. Its a shame Thad, Speights and Holiday combined for only 48 minutes (Ivey and AI also combined for 48 minutes. That's fine for one game...

Great analysis. Upon further view of the game, Brand was certainly a beast and he has the ability to provide that night in and night out. Jordan needs to feel out the situation with Brand and put him in the best positions to be able to produce those 20,10 numbers on a nightly basis. It's also nice to see Speights producing after his injury. I think with Speights, Young and Brand producing on a nightly basis and feeding off each other's energy, the Sixers can make a run to get 30 or so wins under their belt and knock off some up-scale teams. Keep up the good work.

Enjoyed the win, but I'd rather not make a run at 30 wins. Especially not if we are playing AI 30 minutes an night.

We seem to get good draft picks further down. Let's try to win please. If you don't want to win, why do you watch the games?

I enjoyed tonights win. But this year needs to be primarily about developing and evaluating the young players. If you can do that and win then all the better.

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EruThePhenom reply to tk76 on Dec 29 at 1:25
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Hellow!!! you play to win the game...you dont play just to played it hahaha

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Tray reply to stoned81 on Dec 29 at 1:22
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To watch us lose, of course! I too am hoping for a top two pick. What are you hoping for, a first-round matchup with the Celtics and one or two moral victories?

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EruThePhenom reply to Tray on Dec 29 at 1:28
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You know is funny because I say that I want the sixers to lose and get top picks but I always watch the games and Im rootin for them to win

I always root for them to win. I expect them to win about 30. Just want to make sure they give adequate PTto the young kids. I enjoy rooting for AI, but if AI and Willie Green end up combining for 50 minutes while Jrue gets 10 that would be a negative.

No, more likely 30 wins and the 9th pick in the draft. Than we can get another steal with a raw prospect that is four years away.

I'd love the #9 pick w/ enough information to say that Thad doesn't fit so you can package him with the #9 pick to move up to #2. Something like that. Doesn't happen as long as EJ's here, though.

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Mike P reply to tk76 on Dec 29 at 9:32
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Yeah! Lets get another 19 year old player who we don't know what position to play them in!

I hope it's another SF! Lets keep winning to get to that Mediocrity goal! Everyone together now!

1..2..3...

MEDIOCRITY!!!!

NBA purgatory. Its the basketball gods punishing Philadelphia for not selling out playoff games when Dr. J was here :)

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paul reply to Mike P on Dec 29 at 11:19
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"Yeah! Lets get another 19 year old player who we don't know what position to play them in!"

Exactly. I keep wondering whether these people who keep arguing for losing have actually looked at this potential draft.

One can never tell about drafts but this one doesn't look that great. Furthermore, it is a draft heavy on power forwards, something the Sixers don't need. John Wall, the projected #1, is a point guard and a potential franchise player but only the first team will get him. After him there is a very sharp drop in the quality of point guards. There are some good shooting guards (like Wesley Johnson and Evan Turner) who might fit in very well. The Sixers could use another center to succeed Dalembert but this draft doesn't appear to be a great one for centers either.

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JohnEMagee reply to paul on Dec 29 at 11:31
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How would you suggest the capped out bad contract poorly coached penny pinching sixers get better.

This roster as constructed would never contend for an NBA championship...ever

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paul reply to JohnEMagee on Dec 29 at 12:15
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"How would you suggest the capped out bad contract poorly coached penny pinching sixers get better."

Well not by nebulous hope on a draft that doesn't seem particularly strong or particularly well aligned to team needs (unless the Sixers get the first pick). Unless the Sixers get the first pick, I don't see anyone in this draft who is a game changer for them. Wesley Johnson or Evan Turner might be significant contributors if they package Thad somehow. Maybe they could pick up Cole Aldrich but right now he appears more likely to be a Joe Pryzbilla than a Bill Walton. That's not such a bad thing and the Sixers should be shopping for another potential center.

The Sixers had a very good point guard but most of you posting here didn't want him. As it turns out the Sixers probably could have had him for somewhere around 8 million a year and a three year contract. But, to most of you, that option wasn't exciting enough and didn't provide enough opportunity for the imagination. Right now my guess is that it will take longer than three years to find or develop an equivalent successor.

Fire the coach? Sure. While I'm a bit surprised we haven't heard more about that possibility, I'm sure it has been discussed and he may already be among the walking dead. But that action is independent of player personnel moves.

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JohnEMagee reply to paul on Dec 29 at 12:19
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Oh I see, you have a man crush on Andre Miller.

"Most of us" do not offer contracts, I didn't want him, I wanted him gone for a couple years, but those who wanted him back are those who seem contented with a first round playoff loss as a success...the sixers didn't offer him the contract he wanted, don't blame that on 'mmost of us' who want the sixers to be better than 500 some day.

Not really sure where in your long diatribe against 'most of us' you answered the actual question - but if you think Andre Miller makes the sixers 'much better' in the long run - i guess that's your right.

I believe that the sky isn't really blue, it's trick by the republicans

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paul reply to JohnEMagee on Dec 29 at 12:53
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"Oh I see, you have a man crush on Andre Miller."

I have to hand it to you. You are consistent. You manage to provide a glimpse of an ill mannered, unschooled, and boorish origin with each utterance.

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JohnEMagee reply to paul on Dec 29 at 13:06
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And you do an excellent job of avoiding the question yet again, and ignoring the facts.

The sixers didn't want to offer miller 3 years and somehow that's the fault of the posters here?

Somehow you think insulting me will matter and make me change my mind or add to the strength of your factless ranting.

Good on ya

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paul reply to JohnEMagee on Dec 29 at 13:43
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All right, if I must.

Miller was just a piece of the team but he was a piece that worked well and a successful point guard is a rather difficult piece to find. I do think he made the Sixers better (better than without him) but expecting one player to elevate them to a deep run in the playoffs is unrealistic and unreasonable (unless that player is Lebron or Shaquille in his prime). After all, the Timberwolves had Kevin Garnett for years before they moved past the first round and they didn't do so until they added Sprewell and Cassell to the mix. Kobe and Odom weren't enough for the Lakers to make a deep run.

Yes, I realize that my replies are a bit long and don't conform to your preferred style of simian crudity but you have your style and I have mine.

A coincidence that Brand's previous season high in points came in the win at Boston? Nope. This team succeeds when Brand does, which makes it even more important for him to get 35+ minutes a night. Another possible non-coincidence: When Brand came in and *Thad came out* the sixers started their run. I like the Jrue, Iverson, Iguodala, Brand, Dalembert/Speights lineup a lot with Thad and Lou coming off the bench.

I hate that my enjoyment of an unexpected road win vs. a pretty good team is marred by the thought: "Damn this might pause the clock on EJ's getting fired..."

It still kinda looked like they won in spite of him.

Some other observations:

Having AI makes Lou Williams look redundant. Neither one can really stop the other team's PG, but even the aged AI3 is a better shot-maker and distributor. There really ought not to be enough minutes for both of them.

I guess Ivey didn't do anything bad and that Hail Mary three ball was nice, but it kills me to have those minutes not go to Jrue.

What's left of the PO still sucks. But for a couple hand-offs at the start of the possession, I think they're mostly freelancing out there.

Wow it's nice to watch a Sixers game without seeing Willie Green.

Something tells me Thad is on the way out. A legit two would pair better w/ AI9 as a pair of wing players.

I think Dalembert's play clearly benefits from having Brand next to him playing the 4. Brand's hustle and toughness appears to raise Sam's intensity and having another rebounder/shot-blocker in the back line lets Sammy guard the rim more decisively.

Think previous poster are right on the money but sadly we'll never see it. An eight man rotation of Jrue, AI3, AI9, EB and Sam with Thad, M16 and Lou off the bench might sustain .500 ball and be fun to watch.

Too bad the coach is so stubborn about being an idiot.

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paul reply to Vaughn on Dec 29 at 11:35
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"...it kills me to have those minutes not go to Jrue...Wow it's nice to watch a Sixers game without seeing Willie Green."

This site seems to be a veritable shrine of Jrue love, but what has the kid done this year to merit such adoration? If you honestly believe that he has played better than Willie Green this year, then I think you and I must be watching different games. What I think is a more accurate representation of the feelings around here is the Mae West philosophy: "When given the choice between two evils, I always pick the one I haven't tried before."

Don't get me wrong. I like Jrue and I'm OK with the Sixers drafting him (although, so far, Ty Lawson picked right below him looks a hell of a lot more NBA ready), but he is clearly not in the Thad or Speights category of NBA rookie readiness. Personally, I think Jrue currently is much better suited to leading UCLA's backcourt than playing 20 minutes a game in the NBA this year.

I think our big problem is that we value defense. I know, I know, we should probably root for another team if we care to watch guys who take pride in stopping the other team from scoring, but we're stuck with the Sixers.

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JohnEMagee reply to paul on Dec 29 at 11:39
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Or maybe you're watching offense and not caring about defense...cause jrue holiday is a great defender and willie green is a ball hogging chucking idiot

The Warriors beat the Celts. Best news of the night?

OK, I'm running on fumes here. I'll have a wrap tomorrow AM with the rotation chart and some (hopefully) deep thoughts on this one. I will say it always feels good to stick to the Blazers, and Andre Miller certainly didn't look like a difference maker out there tonight for Portland, did he?

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Kenneth on Dec 29 at 3:17
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Interesting comment by Nate McMillian during the postgame Q&A on tonight's game:

Q: Did you think you were jump-shot heavy in the second half?

A: “I need to look at the film. But we were a step slow, I thought, all night long. I mean, the movement, the ball movement, setting our screens, getting up, getting the hits. We walked the ball up the floor. It was a lot of taking the ball out of the basket. But just the tempo, I didn’t think we got to our tempo. They played their tempo, walking the ball down the floor, running the Princeton offense, then attacking us.

“Elton Brand came off (the bench) and we really didn’t have any defense for him or their bigs tonight coming off the bench. And then after the made bucket, we never really got into a flow offensively.”

http://blog.oregonlive.com/behindblazersbeat/2009/12/philadelphia_76ers_104_trail_b.html

i don't mean to dumb it down...every commenter on here is really insightful. but i gotta go with my visceral reaction after last night's game -- GO 76ERS!!!

wow. that felt good. haven't said that in a while.

DNP for Willie certainly helped. I hope they discover his ankle is actually broken.

Got too drunk last night to say anything insightful.

Thadeus Young (20 years old, first round pick): 1 rebound in 20 minutes

Pendagraph: (23 y/o, 2nd round pick): 3 rebounds (2 off) in 20 minutes

Juwan Howard: (54 y/o, drafted by Atilla the Hun): 2 rebounds in 20 minutes.

I want Thadeus to copy this a billion times on a chalkboard ala Bart Simpson

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johnrosz on Dec 29 at 11:43
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Can we attribute this entirely to Elton Brand being a man, or Lamarcus Aldridge being the first woman to play in the NBA?

heh.

You know, EB can do this against pretty much all of the "hybrid" fours. People love to point to how he's going to have trouble chasing those guys out to the three point line, while they completely ignore the fact that they can't handle him at all on the inside.

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johnrosz reply to Brian on Dec 29 at 12:00
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That's very true. One of the problems I have with EB though is that when teams actually decide to double him in the post, he has a very difficult time passing out of the double team...Luckily Portland didn't figure that out.


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