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Sixers Around the Web - Feb. 7th

Story: Inability to stop Knicks costs the Sixers:

http://ow.ly/3Rzs0

Collins: Holiday 'had two bad games':

http://ow.ly/3RzSJ

I'm sort of surprised that Thorn took this job, only to sit around and do nothing for his first full season. Do you think he is going to stand pat for 2 more years util Brand's contract expires?

How quickly you forget the acquisition of Craig Brackins and Darius Songaila.

"I'm sort of surprised that Thorn took this job, only to sit around and do nothing for his first full season"

that's generally been his MO as a GM. He'll make a big move, but he doesn't rush it, and spends some time assessing what he has.

Do you think by now he has an idea of what he has?

Brigham's re-draft order is pretty nuts.

I take that it doens't work under the cap and it's a deal the Nuggets have already turned down except that they would get Corey Brewer now instead of cap space. It's another case of Walsh feeding Broussard a fantasy.

From a hoopsworld chat this morning

"Edwin in LA: Who is the best one-on-one wing defender against Lebron (or does the best against him)? Also, who would you say are some of the best wing defenders in the game right now?
Lang Greene: Edwin - Great question. LeBron is in that rarified air when he's capable of dropping 30-10-10 on anyone guarding him at anytime. Shane Battier is a strong defender. Ron Artest used to be great but is slipping a little. I always say the best defense against LeBron is making him work on offense. Other than that ... only thing guys can do is slow him down"

- no respect for iggy!

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tk76 reply to mopey on Feb 7 at 13:03
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I think most media outside of Philly do not even know the Sixers exist, nor do they ever watch Iguodala.

Its more ignorance than disrespect. SportsCenter never talks about Iguodala shutting guys down, so in the national mentality it never happens. Sort of like a tree falling and nobody watching.

"pathetic" triple-double?

Walsh is walking a tightrope. Best case he signs Melo as a FA this summer, idealy under a more restrictive CBA. That way Melo gets less money- leaving more for NY to build around him. But he has to be careful, because if Melo believes this is then Knicks plan, then he will be angry that they don't want to pay him his max.

So if Walsh low-balls Denver it's win-win. Because they either get him for a song, or they sign him this summer and save some money/capspace.

On the flip side, Denver should come out and play the reverse angle. They should say "NY doesn't really want Melo this year. NY only wants to wait until this summer, so that NY won't have to pay him the max extension." If they play this right, then Melo gets angry (about "disrespect" and "his" money) and starts forcing NY's hand to make a deal.

Ugh, meetings on top of meetings.

Anyway, the latest is Collins saying Brand should be considered for comeback player of the year, do you guys agree?

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tk76 reply to Brian on Feb 7 at 13:05
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Sure. He was lousy the last 2 years, ad has been the most consistent player the Sixers have.

Is Griffin eligible? Is it a comeback if you never played?

Probably

But just like the all star game 'wins matter' (it seems) - so it's basically Richard jeffersons award to lose I think

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Tray reply to GoSixers on Feb 7 at 13:24
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But Denver doesn't get anything. Thad could leave them. Then all they'd get would be Lou.

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Tray reply to Tray on Feb 7 at 13:25
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Replied to the wrong post.

Thought I'd throw out an odd little trade:

http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=4kap6ng

Sounds like the Melo rental price is really cheap. So maybe the Sixers can make some noise this year using some players/contracts that are not part of the long term plan...

Kenyon Martin and Melo (33M of expirings)

for

Lou, Young
Noce, Kapono, Songalia, Hawes

The Sixers take on some extra salary (meaning lux tax) but make that up with increased gate and publicity. not sure about KMart's health... but how would this line-up do for this year?

Jrue/Iguodala/Melo/Brand/KMart

Not sure who you would bring in for bench players.

Then, this summer you get a big trade exception the next season after you do a sign/trade to the knicks of Melo.

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tk76 reply to tk76 on Feb 7 at 13:18
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Making this deal means you are giving p on Lou and thad... but that might happen anyways.

Does that "veteran" line-up get them out of the 1st round?
Where do you go from there? (assuming Melo walks and you have some cap space.)

Maybe, maybe not, but probably also requires a first round pick (or two) to get done as you're giving them a bench player (lou) and a restricted free agent they have to decide upon immediately withonly a couple months to evaluate.

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tk76 reply to GoSixers on Feb 7 at 13:35
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As a RFA they definitely could keep Thad. They would have to already know whether they want him, but some GM;'s are probably high on Thad.

Maybe it would take a 1st. It really depends on what other rental offers they are getting. Thad(22) and and Lou(24) and at least 2 building clocks. Although not as cheap as similarly aged players on their rookie deals.

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tk76 reply to tk76 on Feb 7 at 13:49
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Clocks, blocks... whatever.

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Tom Moore on Feb 7 at 13:17
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Video: Collins on young players, schedule heading into break, Brand:

http://ow.ly/3RPJn

Great video Tom. Listening to Collins is music to my ears every single time. Especially if you compare him to Jordan.

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Tom Moore reply to Xsago on Feb 7 at 16:06
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He gives very thorough answers and is great with the media and fans. He's called me by name since the preseason -- Jordan never bothered through an entire season.

Telling factoid:

How unglamorous is the group that Collins came back to coaching for? Philly was one of just three teams, alongside Charlotte and Cleveland, without a single player listed in the final results of All-Star fan balloting.

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tk76 reply to Tray on Feb 7 at 14:13
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Snider said how he did not want to deal with another big name star after years of AI and Barkley. Now he has his wish... and the irrelevance that goes with it.

Thank god the sixers have a guy who gets the NBA as well as Snider

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Tom Moore on Feb 7 at 13:55
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Video: Brand on the tough schedule, his terrific weekend:

http://ow.ly/3RRRl

This is from David Aldridge who when he was at ESPN and TNT I used to think was the most credible national voice out there

Two-plus weeks until the trade deadline, and the Carmelo Circus aside, along with those guys who everyone knows are on the block -- like the Nets' Troy Murphy and the Knicks' Anthony Randolph and Eddy Curry -- here are the guys that, according to front office sources around the league, are eminently gettable before Feb. 24: Golden State center Andris Biedrins, Memphis guard O.J. Mayo, Lakers forward Ron Artest, Portland centers Marcus Camby and Joel Przybilla, Philadelphia forward Andre Iguodala, Phoenix forward Josh Childress, Washington forward Rashard Lewis, Detroit guard Rip Hamilton, Cleveland forward Antawn Jamison, Minnesota guard Jonny Flynn, Charlotte forwards Stephen Jackson and Boris Diaw and Houston forward Jared Jeffries. NBA.com

My Emphasis

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Tray reply to GoSixers on Feb 7 at 16:10
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Oh, I figured Aldridge emphasized it himself because if that were to happen it would be an earth-shattering event that the whole world would want to know about. (Just kidding.)

I wonder if Washington will find any takers for "eminently gettable" Rashard Lewis. I'm sure someone will trade for Jamison.

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tk76 reply to GoSixers on Feb 7 at 16:18
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Looking at all of those names, which players would demand the most in return.

I'd say Iguodala, Mayo and Jackson. And maybe Camby? I'd don't see their teams giving them up for expirings and peanuts. The other guys could be acquired for cap relief or minimal return.

If reports are to be believed Iguodala has no value due to his unwieldy contract.

I think the most valuable pieces are guys who contribute but still expire this year (like a Przybilla)

Not a big deal, but of not, Kaman isn't on that list

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tk76 reply to GoSixers on Feb 7 at 16:33
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I was mostly thinking of what would be needed to get the player... not what is being offered.

That wide gap between asking price and selling price is why Iguodala is "not on the market."

I see what you were saying then I think Iguodala wold probably cost a lot for a team to get though I figure the Lakers wouldn't just GIVE artest away

Jonny FLynn fell off the map quickly didn't he?

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Tom Moore on Feb 7 at 16:08
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Collins Monday, when asked about the perception that Brand was washed up: I never thought he was washed up. I thought he was a victim of a couple of injuries. Achilles. You put a, but an Achilles injury on a 265-pound man and that takes a lot to come back from. You get yourself back and you blow out your shoulder. And you’re a free agent making a lot of money, with a lot of demands in a city that demands of their athletes to ‘give me my money’s worth.’ Which is what it’s supposed to be about.

"Elton, nobody hurt more than he did. That’s why when I took the job, I talked about him about understanding this city. I know this city loves players like Elton Brand. I was never a star, but they respected me because they knew – moment to moment – I was going to lay it out there. That’s what EB does. If you go start to finish this year, from Moment 1, he’s been out most consistent guy. Not even close. It’s good to see that he’s being recognized for what he does. He could easily be the comeback player of the year this year, which would be fantastic because of what he’s done and how hard he’s worked."

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tk76 reply to Tom Moore on Feb 7 at 16:21
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He can talk up Brand all he wants (and Brand is worthy of praise this year) but it won't generate a tick more attention from the general fans. Unless Thorn does something to energize the fanbase, I don't see the Sixers being as"relevant" with fans for year to come.

I'm not sure there is a good move to be made, but that does not change the facts.

Do you think Wall would have energized the fanbase? I don't really think so.

I think winning in the first round of the playoffs and THEN still contending the next year is the only thing to be done.

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tk76 reply to GoSixers on Feb 7 at 16:32
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Griffin has energized fans. Same with Curry for GSW.

But these last few years have not been chock full of superstar draft talent.

I agree on the lack of good moves to be made but i strongly disagree about the "relevancy" in the fans perception. I think if the Sixers start winning enough games to be in the top 10 of the league a lot of fans "appear out of nowhere".

When you take a look at it the last winning season the Sixers had was 6 years ago and even then they were merely 2 games over .500. If you look back the last really good season was Larry Browns last season (48-34) and the last 50 win season (56-26) was 10 years ago when we lost in the finals.

So the point is the reason the Sixers are overlooked is because they have been losing for a very long time. That can change very very easily. All it takes is a few more wins... I'd say if the Sixers continue improving the way they have this year, next year there is a solid chance they will be relevant among the fans again.

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tk76 reply to Xsago on Feb 7 at 16:37
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I don't agree. If this team consistently wins about 55% all year long then they won't sell many more tickets. They would need to exceed 60% (50 wins) and probably by a good margin.

I do agree that winning trumps star power. But they are not usually mutually exclusive. What team headed for 50+ wins lacks big name star(s)? Or is your contention that the current players would be perceived as stars if the team was winning?

This current 20-14 run does not feel substantively different than similar runs 2,3 and 4 seasons ago.

Part of the problem is 'contention'ness

The eagles, phillies and flyers are consistently contending, not just to make the playoffs but to win in the playoffs, I think the sixers would have to eastblish that kind of contentionness to get people to pay attention.

The NFL Season ended last night - i'm sure by the middle of work Philly sports radio will be focused on one thing

Baseball

I'd say everything above 48 wins is a good team in a fans perception. 48 wins however usually put you ina good position to actually win a round in the playoffs so those aren't exactly mutually exclusive in my mind. I also believe that if the team is winning the perception regarding a lot of the players would change. There are two ways to become a "star":
1) Huge stats on a bad team + highlights (big market team is a plus but is not a must).
2) Being one of the best players on a winning and truly competitive team on any given night both in the regular season and in the playoffs. And by winning team i mean 50+ win team.

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tk76 reply to Xsago on Feb 7 at 16:55
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This franchise has the stench of mediocrity. Winning 48 games with the current roster is not going to win over many new fans. But if they built up to 48 wins without Brand/Iguodala then probably some fans would gain interest, hoping the team was back on the rise.

This seems muddled to me. No one cares about who's on the team right now. Fans will come back when either (a) they start winning, and winning in the playoffs or (b) they get a superstar, in which case they'll come back, but won't stay unless the team starts winning in the playoffs.

If this team wins say 40 this season, no one will care. If they win 48 next year, with no major moves, and get out of the first round of the playoffs, the perception won't be that they're overachieving on the backs of Iguodala and Brand, it'll be that they're building something with the young guys on the roster, and I do believe attendance will bounce back.

Now whether that's possible or not, I don't know, but I feel like you're mixing your own feelings for the ceiling of this roster as constructed with the disinterest from the majority of fans. The disinterest will lessen with winning, while the "championship" aspirations which you, rightly or wrongly, see as limited by the personnel on the roster, don't really mean much to the average fan. They'll fall for false hope, if it is false, as long as it comes in the form of success on the national stage, in front of the national media.

They're less likely to fall for false hope (or stay around) in a city where the other 3 teams are consistently contending for serious playoff runs.

Eh. Serious playoff runs? Have you watched the Eagles in the post season the past two years?

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johnrosz reply to Brian on Feb 7 at 18:11
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look how young the core of that team is though.

I'm an Eagles fan, I'm not going to argue against them, but I'm not sure fans have really been jazzed about them over the past two seasons because they had such high hopes for the post season. I didn't really even think they'd make the post season heading into this past year.

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johnrosz reply to Brian on Feb 7 at 18:22
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yeah that's the way I looked at it. I was stunned that they made a playoff run while in the process of rebuilding. Think they caught a break with Dallas falling on their faces, and NY suffering what seems to be a routine late season collapse.

But still, with a patchwork O line, a group of 22 year old weapons, and a QB that hadn't played a full game in 3 years...Not bad.

I've gathered the Juan Castillo signing has ruffled the feathers of the fan base, but I can't see how much worse he can be than McDermott.

Fans are jazzed

they're just tired of Reid (I was listening to 97.5 a couple weeks after the game) - they have faith the roster is good - (defensive upgrades necessary) but don't have faith that Reid is the guy to get it done.

Plus the NFL is the one billion ton beast - look at Oakland - Raiders fans show up all the time - A's can contend for a divsion title and not get sell outs

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tk76 reply to Brian on Feb 7 at 17:29
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Actually, I was trying to project my take on the fans- separate from my feelings.

I watch every game and am fully engaged. If they win a bunch next year I will give credit to Collins, Jrue and Iguodala (and hopefully Turner.) I'll be excited because they will be soon getting out of cap hell (or more accurately cap purgatory.)

But the stories will read Brand resurgence, Iguodala finaloy a star... and I don't think many fans will get behind it.

But I could be totally off. Philly is a good sports town when they think their teams are trying.

I'm trying to think back to when they signed Brand. They were coming off a surprising showing in the first round vs. Detroit, and landed the biggest name on the free agent market. Didn't they sell a bunch of season tickets that summer? I can't remember the reports.

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tk76 reply to Brian on Feb 7 at 17:37
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But they did not sell out much in the regular season or playoffs (before or after Brand.)

OK, I'm sick of meetings and looking to kill a couple minutes, so let's check it out:

TOR (home opener) - 15,750
NYK - 11,717
SAC - 10,100
UTA - 12,839
OKC - 13,385
LAC - 13,474
GSW - 13,556
ORL - 14,985
CHI - 13,561
LAL - 19,119
NJN - 13,096
CLE - 15,550
WAS - 15,865
MIL - 11,538

Those are all the home games prior to Brand's shoulder injury. So yeah, you're probably right. There may have been mitigating circumstances, by the time the Phils were done in the series, the Sixers were off to a slow start, right?

Here are the playoff games:

Game 3 - 16,492
Game 4 - 16,464
Game 6 - 16,691

and the playoff games from the previous season, against Detroit:

Game 3 - 18,805
Game 4 - 18,347
Game 6 - 14,130

Wow, look at that dropoff in game 6 against Detroit.

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tk76 reply to Brian on Feb 7 at 19:10
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I don't think Sixers fans are unique. There are some regional and city features, but generally fans are fans.

Fan bases have a goos deal of inertia. If a team is a consistent winner then fans will show for a few years even if the team is on a downturn (The Pistons drew nearly 19K last year.) Likewise Sixer fans have seen years of lousy teams, and won't be overly quick to embrace a winner.

Hell look at the cavs this year - and then realize that season ticket renewal is around this time of year and almost no one is renewing their cavs tickets like they did last year.

QUicken Loans might rival sixer town for emptiness last year.

I think philadlephia is more of a fight because of the flyers - there are very few strong hockey / basketball towns that support 'both' teams when they're down - let alone one of them...i suppose the best way to look at that would be chicago right now right - both those teams are up(don't the bruins still suck?)

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tk76 reply to GoSixers on Feb 7 at 19:28
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Its also a bit troubling how the Sixers lacked consistent attendance back in the glory days of the late 70's and 80's. They did not consistently sell out playoff games when Dr J was here.

That is ancient history, but it makes you wonder if there is all that much of a nascent fanbase in the first place? It also makes you wonder if I used the word nascent correctly? I'm try

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tk76 reply to tk76 on Feb 7 at 19:29
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I'm trying to fight the decline of the English Language.

I always thought that the 'basketball' fandom in Philly stemmed from the Big 5 (not you you stupid yuppies in Villanova) and how the high school kids would go to the big 5 schools and it was something uniquely Philadelphia (and cheap), and it's popularity indicated to people that Philadelphia was a basketball city while I tend to think of it as a college basketball city, and college basketball fans are not always pro basketball fans, for a variety of reasons.

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tk76 reply to GoSixers on Feb 7 at 19:45
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I think Big 5 was great when they played at small, overcrowded gyms. It doesn't work as well in big arenas.

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Tray reply to Brian on Feb 7 at 21:38
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No, I entirely disagree. Like I said earlier today, we're one of three teams - us, Charlotte, and Cleveland - that doesn't have a single player in All-Star fan balloting. Lots of really bad teams, worse teams than us, have players that got some votes - some of them not even good players. Cousins finished in the final voting. Biedrins finished in the final voting. Kaman and Bargnani are there. Marc Gasol got the 4th most votes among Western centers. Rudy Gay got over a quarter million votes, Monta Ellis got 400,000. Granger, McGee, Ben Wallace, Brook Lopez, Brandon Jennings, and John Wall were in the final balloting. To me, this suggests that we have a fanbase unexcited about our players to an extent way out of proportion to our lack of success. That Brook Lopez finishes in the final All-Star balloting and Iguodala and Brand don't, that Sixers fans come on here suggesting we trade Iguodala for Lopez, suggests that fans are deeply unenthused about our best players to the point where their sense of reality with respect to our players is really distorted. Keep in mind, also, that Holiday was on the ballot too, and finished behind Arenas, Jennings, Wall, Jamal Crawford, and Darren Collison. Now I'm not saying that anyone could realistically make a case for Holiday as All-Star, but Jennings, Collison, Arenas, and arguably Wall are worse players, and their local fans voted for them - even though their teams are (were in Arenas's case) lousy. I mean, the Pacers; they've been awful forever and at one point had three players on the All-Star leaderboard, finishing with two - and it's not like there aren't other sports in Indiana. Or look at the Internet - there's so little out there about the Sixers, while teams like the Wizards are the subject of obsessive blog coverage, with multiple outlets parsing what Andray Blatche says on local sports radio. Living in D.C., I can tell you that a surprising number of people really care about McGee and Blatche and Wall's futures to a degree that I don't think Philadelphians have cared about any Sixer since maybe Iverson got traded and people thought Iguodala could become a superstar. There's intense interest here in the rebuilding process itself; it's not like everyone's fandom is on hold until they win 48 games. So I don't know that fans start caring again until they bring in someone fans like. If we continue to be a team where guys trade off on who's going to lead us in scoring for the night with 18 points, I don't know that that will ever capture fans' imagination even if it works.

Were there any sixers players on ballots? The ballots are decided pre-season - by 'experts' like the folk at ESPN who refuse to list Tim Duncan in his proper position cause it hurts Tim's feelings.

I honestly don't know if any sixers were eligible for votes because I care about things the public votes for as much as I care about menstrual cycles - the public hardly ever gets anything right when asked to vote unless presented with an obvious mismatch

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Tom Moore on Feb 7 at 20:14
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Sixers don't want history to repeat:

http://ow.ly/3S5Fl

Spike Lee tells Kevin Garnet to Calm the F*** down

All this 'he's gritty' crap has to stop - Kevin Garnett is a punk - and a cheap player - and all the celtics follow his lead and get away with it - he hit a player in the junk last week - and i haven't heard yet about fine or suspension has anyone?

And when people start to wonder why basketball is losing the 'main stream fan' remember that KG was lauded for years even though he was a well known punk ass bitch

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johnrosz reply to GoSixers on Feb 7 at 22:48
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he's a prick but can't deny that he was a great player for a number of years.

He's always been a prick - he's always been a cheap shot artist - call him like you call a normal NBA player he probably fouls out about 35% of the time

If Kevin Garnett was in the NFL - how many games would he be suspended in a season?

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johnrosz reply to GoSixers on Feb 7 at 22:55
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the illegal screens have always bothered me.

Yeah, he would get his fair share of 15 yard penalties, but he'd have been one hell of a tight end.

He's a cheap shot artist - that would get him fined - gauranteed on defense - he'd have numerous helmet to helmet penalties and probably a few cheap ass horsecollar pulls

Not to mention the NFL is all about image - and his treatment of 'ball boys' and team mates (punching em in the face if they show him up) wouldn't play well.

He's been a punk for a long while - he's no better than ocho cinqo

The sixers are not in the top (or bottom) 5 of ratings this year check it

Didn't see a link to a complete chart...wonder if comcast would like to share

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tk76 reply to GoSixers on Feb 8 at 9:21
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Char and Mil in bottom 5, and almost no viewers overall.

I guess their long suffering fanbases did not buy in on their BS playoff runs last season. And to me that suggest Philly fans would be no less drawn in by transient success by the current core.

Well, it hasn't been sustained, right? If either of those teams had picked up where they left off, maybe the numbers are a little better. Milwaukee is pretty much unwatchable and they don't have their "star" pg.

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Marcus on Feb 8 at 1:07
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If the sixers had john wall I believe attendance would be up some hat kid definitely has the potential to be Allstar - Superstar In the future.


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