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Great post Brian! That was a heart-breaker, indeed. I agree with you about Collins. Those rotations were strange to say the least. I wonder if Turner is in the dog house with Collins.

Beyond that, how is everyone feeling about the emergence of Spencer Hawes? He seriously looked good out there tonight. I hope that doesn't prevent the front office from making a move for a big that can play some D!

This Evan Turner situation is beginning to get a little ridiculous. We talked on SixersBeat about how we needed Evan Turner to defend big wings on this trip, and with how horribly Meeks, Lou, Jrue and Nocioni played, there's no reason for them to be out on the court, particularly Lou and Nocioni. But, because Turner's confidence is so shattered right now (both his and Doug's doings), he's not an option.

The Sixers need to get productivity out of Evan Turner. Doug Collins needs to figure this out. Failing to do so would undo all the possible he's done for Young and Hawes.

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Statman reply to Derek Bodner on Dec 18 at 12:09
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Failing to do so would undo all the possible he's done for Young and Hawes.

Did you mean to say negate all the positive?
(If so, I agree to an extent -- provided that the ceiling of Turner is higher than the ceiling of Thad or Hawes, which is an open question right now.)

Yeah. I was only half awake.

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deepsixersuede on Dec 18 at 9:46
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Iggy continues to lock up the stars; games like this should raise his value for any team dreaming of winning a title.What would Portland add to the Batum deal to peak the sixers interest?

With all the talk of Favors over Turner the one thing we could of used last night was a player who could create his own offense in those dry spells, something Turner eventually should be able to do. Collins seems to care about things like a players hometown or a players parents attending a game, something that may endear him to " the guys" and push them to run through a wall for him but to us fans can be a little frustrating.

Derek, if you could; a scouting report on Batum and how he compliments Turner and putting age, skillset and salary into the picture , would ya ?

Totally agree on Turner, it's like Collins thinks we are playing for a title this year... I think that also the 7-man rotation he used over the past games makes no sense in the long term.
Probably Collins wants to win more games NOW and get some rythm in order to make the team get more confident in itself, "energize" an environment (players, crowd etc) that has been depressed (sorry Brian) or didn't care much for years etc etc, but really, if you think about it, this is going to be another transition year so every minute taken from Turner, Speights etc and given to veterans with no future here such as Battie, Nocioni etc makes few sense to me.
Anyway good game overall, if we could only had scored more from the perimeter... better losing like this than allowing a last second layup, anyway :-)

My comments on the game:
- This was a good game for the Sixers overall, undone by a few stretches of (very) poor play. There were a couple encouraging stretches where the Sixers' defense looked stifling, with players making correct rotations and causing the Lakers (who don't have very many perimeter playmakers) to look confused.
- Looking at the boxscore (and remembering the game), I'd say Hawes outplayed Gasol and Iguodala outplayed Kobe. How many times have the Lakers won when that happened? But the Sixers had no answers for Odom, who was too quick for Brand and too (everything) for Thad. A couple times, I found myself asking about Odom what other teams' announcers have asked this year in relation to Thad: "Do they even know he's left-handed?" [To be fair, Odom has done it to everyone this year; he's having an all-star season.]
- Matt Barnes is quietly having a better year than Artest, nearly across the board. I wonder if the Lakers will ever move toward benching Artest.
- Going forward, if the Sixers are going to make the leap from a good and competitive (but flawed) team to a good team that wins consistently, a lot will rest on more consistent play from Holiday. I don't fault him so much for the poor shooting in itself, but some of his shot selection was poor, and I didn't think he played a good floor game.
- Like everyone else, my first thought in the 4th quarter was: "How is that lineup going to score?" I know he's in the doghouse, but Speights would have been a good choice there. And Brand had already gotten 4 minutes of rest at the end of the 3rd, so he should have been in too. A lineup of Thad-Brand-Speights-Lou-Turner would have been better, I think (but hindsight is 20-20).
- I was disappointed in Thad's play in this game. He seemed to regress to all his bad habits: leaving guys open on 3's, not defending with physicality in the post, not boxing out, taking long jumpers, driving out of control. If the Sixers were going to win, they needed him to do damage against the Lakers' bench, which he really didn't. I think he's on other teams' radars now, so it's up to him to make the right adjustments.
- Lou is now down to 35% shooting. Safe to say, we've seen a lot more "Bad Lou" than "Good Lou" this year.
- Meeks is now down to 42% shooting, including 24% in the last 4 with 18% 3-pointers. If that continues, expect to see the "floor spacing" that he has provided decrease, as other teams will simply leave him open.
- I like the idea of an "Iguodala victim list." If one defines it as holding a 17+ PPG scorer 10 or under points, the list for the first 26 games this year includes: Granger, G. Wallace, Roy, Pierce, and Kobe. Pretty impressive. Of course, the Iguodala critics (who never give him any credit) are quick to point out that Pierce had the flu, Kobe hurt his finger, etc.
- Finally, the positive story of the game was Spencer Hawes. I think at the beginning of the year, the odds against his having that type of game against a Gasol were astronomical. If he continues to play like that, he'll go beyond earning a new contract -- he'll accomplish the much more difficult task of earning the respect of the diehard Sixer fans (I'll be one of the last to be convinced, I'm sure).


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deepsixersuede reply to Statman on Dec 18 at 12:27
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It seemed the last couple games Thad made some nice interior passes to Hawes and Brand and last night I remember one terrific block out of Gasol. He seems to be a quick learner under our new coach.

I like your idea of an Iggy victim list but would like to go off of that with a " Spencer held his own" list;

1] David West
2] Brook Lopez
3] Blake Griffin
4] Pau Gasol
5] Dwight Howard ?

Interested to see if Howard can be brought away from the lane area tonight by Hawes or Elton. Nobody will out jump or out strongarm Howard so if you can't beat him, take him out of his comfort zone.

Otis Smith acknowledged the Arenas talks, rating their seriousness at an "eight out of ten." What in the world is he thinking? He might as well sign Iverson from Turkey. It'd be a lot cheaper.

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johnrosz on Dec 18 at 12:46
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Looks like Magee was wrong about Arenas having the most untradeable contract in the league if Orlando is really dumb enough to take him on. EB has far and away the worst contract in the NBA, like I've often said. He will continue to burden us with his Philly Max for at least another year and a half

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Tray reply to johnrosz on Dec 18 at 12:50
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You'd think Rashard would be untradeable too, but he's apparently what Washington is getting. At least Washington has a reason to do this, Wall's development. Orlando though... and then they say they want to trade a Carter/Gortat package somewhere too. And the guy they're thinking of getting with that package is Turkoglu. I guess there's only so much you can get in return for overpaid, washed-up players, but... why trade for even more severely washed-up players?

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deepsixersuede reply to Tray on Dec 18 at 13:18
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I read that Carter and Lewis may be traded to Wash. and the only way that works is if Hinrich and another piece [ Jialan] goes to Orlando. Washington possible starting 5 ; McGee,Blatche,Lewis,Carter,Wall ; not bad.

I don't know, Rashard has been terrible this year, and Blatche is so inefficient.

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deepsixersuede reply to Tray on Dec 18 at 14:00
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I wonder if a change of scenery lights a fire under Lewis, see M.Beasley. I am not a Blatche fan, not a smart player, and believe Serafin, if he shows a pulse, will push him for minutes by next year.

Lewis is off HGH so he sucks now.

That's all.

Hope the Wiz trade for Carter and then just buy him out next year.

If that happens, Leonsis is already beginning his slow march to making the team matter again.

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Mike P reply to Mike P on Dec 18 at 14:08
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Already beginning makes no sense. They began that when they got Wall. Oh bad posting.

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Rich reply to johnrosz on Dec 18 at 14:36
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Totally disagree about Brand having the worst contract in the league. It will burden us for awhile, but you said at least for another year and a half. At least he will be tradeable at some point. Also, I don't mind us winning, but what the heck are we going to accomplish in the next two years?

EB still has a better contract than at least Arenas and Lewis. Those two happened to be swapped for each other, that really doesn't count for anything.

Brandon Roy has to be up there. I think LaMarcus Aldridge's contract is a joke. There are others as well. The beauty of a bad contract is that the longer you have it, the better it looks. He might be movable next season.

For sure the game typically doesn't go like this where the Sixers played good defense and rebounded but as Larry Brown would say guys just didn't make shots. If the Sixers shoot 39 % from 3 they win this game. I think and I am hoping that Collins is feeling like Turner can learn from watching a game like this and doesn't want to shatter his confidence further by putting him in a bad situation. Otherwise there really is no excuse for his DNPCD.

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johnrosz reply to Rob_STC on Dec 18 at 12:52
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There's no reason to play Nocioni ahead of him. At least with Meeks I guess you can hope he will get hot, so to a degree I understand leaving him out there. Not that I think it really would've made a difference, but you have to let the number 2 pick play. That's a big part of DC's job right now.

The thing about Jrue is he is incredibly talented and as Doug said though eventually it will not be ok to keep making the same mistakes he keeps making. That is why I had likes the idea of a veteran backup point guard. I am not sure why the Sixers never embraced this idea. They are 3 or 4 times every game where he either takes an ill advised shot or forces passes that never have a chance.

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eddies' heady's on Dec 18 at 13:52
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Funny how some are thinking that if Doug played Turner he would have helped us to win that game. What was he going to do? Help the movement of the ball by passing it as soon as he got it? If we make just a few shots, just a few, we win that game and Collins is lauded except for the odd combos at the start of 2nd and 4th quarters.

Turner not playing is by his own doings. He was handed a starting job at shooting guard and never showed anything (not just in games, but obviously in the oft overlooked practices). He was playing backup PG before the starting job and showed nothing there. Because he's shown the staff next to nothing at backup point, Doug has been putting him out there at the SF spot (the last few games while keeping Jrue and Jodie out there when he comes in), and he's been just as invisible there.

In addition, he's handled the ball a bit occasionally since being removed from the starting lineup and he just passes it as soon as he crosses halfcourt, never attempting to create anything (probably by design from the staff b/c maybe he can't create?).

Evan has made his own bed and he's now laying in it. Doug has exhausted nearly every measure available to him as a coach. Evan's situation is similar to Speights - they offer next to nothing when on the floor so Doug rightfully sits them.

If a guy isn't giving you productivity anywhere, you can't force productive out of him. Just like you can't get blood from a turnip.

Go ahead and shoot the messenger and fire your guns, it wouldn't seem usual without it.

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deepsixersuede reply to eddies' heady's on Dec 18 at 14:08
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I was happy to read that Collins played Nucioni to hopefully spread the floor with his shooting, not because his parents were there, but the point is, unlike Spieghts, its not an effort thing with Turner but a confidence thing, and if he can overcome this through just practicing and not making a couple of plays in a game, that is fine, but the sooner he gets to produce in a game situation, the sooner he may start showing what we all want to see.

See, it isn't actually about beating the Lakers. It's about developing young players so that one day we'll be able to beat the Lakers on a regular basis. I don't care if he fires the basketball into the stands a dozen times and singlehandedly loses the game if it helps him attain a comfort level with playing in the NBA.

It's not about winning games with Nocioni. It's just not. If we win with the young guys and Brand, great. I actually have no problem with Meeks starting. I do have a problem with him and Nocioni playing the whole game over Turner when they can't hit the broad side of a barn.

Turner and Speights are not similar situations. Speights' situation is a lot about effort on the defensive end, which Turner gives. Turner also is a rookie when Speights is in his third year.

The odd combos in the 2nd and 4th would have been a lot better with ET in the game! Also, how do you know what's going on in practice?

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eddies' heady's reply to Rich on Dec 18 at 15:27
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Civility? I'll sure take it.

@Suede - you said the following: "..the sooner he gets to produce in a game situation, the sooner he may start showing what we all want to see." -------- the sooner he gets to produce? the guy has played over 20 min multiple times and when even less than 20 minutes was given he still showed next to nothing. don't see how you can say 'when he gets to produce in a game'. He's been given ample opportunity as far as I'm concerned

@Tray - first off that's just ludicrous to be OK with that just for a player to attain a comfort level. i'm no fan of this training grounds mentality at this level, particularly in live game action, that's what camp and practices are for. but looking past that, how much development is there really in a 22 year old with limited athleticism at this level?

@Rich - you say you have a problem w/ Meeks and Noc playing when they couldn't hit the side of a barn as if Turner's specialty is shooting? what Doug is doing in these games, and videos posted, and quotes tell me a lot about what is going on in practice. you're really not going to tell me that if someone is showing out in practice and the staff won't use them in games are you?

This not winning games with Noc is ridiculous. It doesn't matter to me who it is as long as we friggin' win. Thinking about what may happen or who may be here in 2-3 years is silly. At some point, particularly as a diehard fan, you have to deal with the here and now - and accept it.

I read in Cooney’s chat that Collins was not in on the Turner draft decision. Not to say he was against it, but it was the exclusive decision of Thorn/Stefanski. Couple that with Collins always tenpering expectations for Turner, and I wonder if Collins does not see much of a future in him. Collins talks of Jrue as a future star, while he typically uses descriptions like “nice player or long NBA career” when describing Turner.

BTW, this was the first time I've heard some level of confirmation to the chatter befoer the draft that Collins might have wanted to draft someone else. Or maybe I am reading to much into this? here is the quote:

1:56
[Comment From Raff]
Any truth to the rumor that Collins wanted to draft Favors and got out voted in the draft room?
1:57
Bob Cooney: He says he let the front office make that decision and didn't play a part in it. I haven't gotten a true answer, so i can't speak to it.

http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/hotbutton/Chat_Sixers_with_Bob_Cooney_1215.html

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deepsixersuede reply to tk76 on Dec 18 at 14:13
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I remember his son talking about Favors to him in their A.C.C. battles.

"BTW, this was the first time I've heard some level of confirmation to the chatter befoer the draft that Collins might have wanted to draft someone else. Or maybe I am reading to much into this? here is the quote:"

The rumors were he fell in love with the bigs, but he denied those rumors publicly.

BTW, Thorn was hired well after the draft. In fact, he was still in NJ at the time, albeit a lame duck.

Thorn wasn't here yet. It would've been a Stefanski/DiLeo decision.

yeah, I'm off about the Thorn part. But the key question is whether Collins role in the draft has any impact on how he uses or views Turner now. I hope Collins is not as down on Turner as some of the fans.

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eddies' heady's reply to tk76 on Dec 18 at 15:32
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From what Doug has shown so far, it's foolish to think that his role/non-role in the draft has any effect on his use of Turner. The guy is going all out to win games. If a player can help him he's going to use him.

Collins can't help but be down on Turner because of Turner himself. Just like some of the fans, including myself.

So Hedo is back in Orlando?


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