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Perspective on the OKC Loss

A loss is a loss. What they need to do is regroup and get ready for the Celtics. Learn from the mistakes, but don't over-think about the loss and let that shake your newly found confidence. Nobody expects them to win every game, but at this point they should be in every game and be able to win at least half of the "down to the last possession games". I view this year as a whole as an important learning experience in the winning ways for the team. They have already shown that they have learned a lot during the course of the season, but there is still a lot more to learn.

Story: Thunder get on roll late to defeat Sixers:

http://ow.ly/4bAQX

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Philly in NYC on Mar 10 at 8:20
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It would never happen, but I think this would be a good trade for both teams?....Lebron for Iggy and Jrue.

It looks like the Heat are having a bit of trouble with getting Wade and Lebron to maximize each other's talents. Personally, I think that this would make the Heat into a much better "team". Their starting 1-4 would be Jrue, Wade, Iggy, Bosh. Wade could be the star and the other players would be a very strong supporting cast....both offensively and defensively. I gotta say that I like this trade a lot for Miami.

For the Sixers, it's simple....they would be giving up 2 very good players for a star. Unfortunately they will have to make this type of trade (likely offering more) in order to get a star here. Again, not gonna happen, but if it did, the Sixers starting 1-4 would be something like ET, Lebron, Thad, Brand. The Sixers would finally have a star and a go-to guy in Lebron. I think ET could develop into a good PG and I could see Lebron-Thad being similar to Jordan-Pippen. This would sell a lot of tix too which would allow the Sixers to hopefully retain Thad when the time comes.

Just for the fun of discussing...what do you guys think?

The difference between top 5 players and top 20 players is immense to me.

You don't give up a top 5 player for a top 20 player and an average PG with a lot of upside.

Chalmers and Lebron is much better than Iguodala and Jrue.

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Philly in NYC reply to Joe on Mar 10 at 8:34
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Jrue is definitely better than an average PG and is still very young and improving. Part of this argument is that the 2-star system in Miami is not working with both Lebron and Wade. I would argue that Miami's team makeup would be better with Jrue and Iggy to complement Wade and Bosh. And I see Jrue as a significant upgrade over Chalmers.

Is Comcast allowed to throw in $1 billion cash under salary cap rules? Cuz that's the only way on earth this is a fair trade for Miami. Comcast does have the cash, and getting LeBron under the Comcast umbrella would be worth a billion dollars in marketing imo.

I just re-watched Westbrook's 7 turnovers on synergy. 2 of them were completely unforced bad passes where Holiday was several feet off of him, completely unforced. Another one was an offensive foul where Jrue had switched off of Westbrook. Another one was a ballhandling blunder where Jrue was there, but he wasn't applying much pressure. 3 of them I would say Jrue had a direct hand in.

I think crediting Jrue for those 7 turnovers is a little disingenuous.

And I didn't mean that in the sense that you were intentionally misleading, just don't I don't think it's representative of the defense Jrue played last night.

I didn't credit all 7 turnovers to Jrue, but I do think he's responsible for Westbrook's shaky ball security in general. I'm not 100% sure of this, but I think every second Westbrook was on the floor, Jrue was guarding him. Obviously not including switches here, but I don't there was ever a time where Jrue was on the bench while Westbrook was in the game and Jrue was not. Maybe the last two minutes of the third. I'd have to check.

What does synergy tell you about Iguodala's defense on Durant? My impression was that Iguodala caused at least 3 of Durant's 4 turnovers and generally challenged most of Durant's shots, but a lot of Durant's misses were on open shots.

I'll try to re-watch them at some point today. My general impression was similar, Durant made a lot of contested shots, missed some uncontested.

Story: Cheeks not counting on call to Hall:

http://ow.ly/4bBec

I look at this game as a crucial learning lesson for the youngsters. They will look at game tape and discuss how to knock durant off the 3 pt line (which is extremely hard to do). Otherwise, we as fans like to jump on the bandwagon very hard and fast, but these players require years of training in hard circumstances just like this one.

The "durants" have played in big games now for 2 solid years, and played their asses off in the playoff series against the Lakers.

Sixers must do the same. they must enter the playoffs ready to learn about execution in the last 3 minutes. When we look back at this season, we will say that these were the times Jrue, Turner, less Iguodala (man he rushes his dribble in the last minute, doesnt he?) gained their credibility and reps of crunch time baskets and defense. And it will be a net positive.

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William reply to Shawn on Mar 10 at 11:16
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I agree. The difference between this and the two seasons they made the playoffs is that they have more young pieces that management seems to be more willing to build around. Every loss hurts with me and this particular one I think will help them in the long term. There are only 4-5 teams that have closers like Durant and to a lesser extent Westbrook on one team. Hopefully Holiday and/or Turner can be those guys for us. I feel a lot better about this team long term than I have in the last ten years. I read what Barkley said about basically tanking the season and getting a high pick which makes no sense to me. They are developing their young talent for the most part and still winning. That's what I believe is how u build a successful franchise. If you have a chance to get a 'superstar' you have the pieces to do so, but at this point I don't mind the young guys developing. Beat the c's on Friday!

I don't disagree with what has been said. They can learn from these types of "young" mistakes.


But they also made these exact mistakes many times this year. It was more like the same warts rearing their ugly head than some kind of new issue they had never confronted.

So the positives I see are:

1. The team clearly has talent. They can hang with the likes of OKC, even if they tend to piss thing away late.

2. Jrue offensively has some of his best moments against the best opposition. Really good quality to have in your PG.

3. Jrue also makes his biggest gaffes late in close games. Not specifically this game- but certainly a issue this year.

4. Same type of mistakes late "trying not to lose" where they snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory. But they have done this less as the year goes on- and it seems like for the most part only good teams are now able to cash in on these mistakes.

5. it will be even more painful if they lose like this in their playoff series- but odds are they will. So will they have to wait an entire year to "show growth" or can they somehow fix these yips before the playoffs? I'd almost rather see them outclassed in the playoffs then piss wins away.

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tk76 reply to tk76 on Mar 10 at 9:49
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Actually, those aren't all positives... but maybe I'm incapable of staying positive for very long :)

The sixers do have a guy who can just out jump the other team. Unfortunately he's a rookie that Collins doesn't like to play in certain situations against better teams.

I didn't think the sixers were going to win, going in, but by the last minute I figured that they were going to, was very disappointing.

Not using Louis Williams is over time is something Doug should have been asked as well, he was really the only guy with a stroke and drawing fouls in the fourth, no reason not to bring him back in when the fourth ends.

I'd like to know whose decision it was to play the four corners with a 24 second clock (i know that's not what it was but just saying) in that last minute. Was doug calling those plays or was that an on the court decision?

Anyone with any fortitude, I'd be interested to hear 'joe fan' reaction (if it's talked about instead of chase utleys knee) on sports radio today. Specificially interested in what Iguodala Hater #1 Misanelli has to say (i can't listen to him - sorry - i might break my computer at work)

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eddies' heady's on Mar 10 at 10:05
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Thanks Brian for a really good writeup. It doesn't help the sting, but a good read nonetheless to start off the morning. They sure fed off the energy of the crowd but in the same breath I'd say the size and intensity of the crowd made them nervous a tad also. It's not like they're used to that at home.

If they can just beat those little greenies on Friday night it will smooth it all over for me. Despise some Celtics to the nth degree, always have. We've had them in the basket twice already this year only to let them jump out, it'd be nice if it went the other way as a statement that we're for real and a notice to them that they don't want us in the playoffs.

If you watch Tom Moore's Iguodala interview in the reading list, Tom tries to pin Iguodala down on the Durant three and assign blame. Thought Iguodala handled it well, could've mentioned the moving screen or Turner not switching, but he just said it was a communication issue between the players and it was their fault.

Well, you know that if Iguodala had said anything that sounded remotely like assigning blame, the haters would have jumped on him for that. He may have learned his lesson from the past (e.g., the Ray Allen three a couple years ago), and I also wouldn't be surprised if Coach Collins has drilled into his players the importance of staying together in public comments. The team seems to have done a very good job of that this year.

By the way, as I said earlier in the week, I'm glad this game came after the Pacers game, because it could easily have deflated them if it had come before. Unfortunately, the next two are reversed: the more winnable game is the second one.

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johnrosz reply to Statman on Mar 10 at 14:21
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I never like players trying to identify one play as the cause for the loss. If that were the case, Evan could make the claim that Iggy made a handful of bad plays leading up to the tying 3. Or that Lou missed an open shot...it just keeps going. Better to just say it was a collective loss.

Or Ed Stefanski traded Sam Dalembert and that's why the defensive rebounding ws so crappy :)

One thing I forgot to mention about Jrue, and I think this is important. He took terrible care of the ball against Indy, possibly his worst game of the season in that department. He responded not by shrinking away, but by taking the bull by the horns, running the offense and playing basically error-free offensive basketball on the bigger stage the very next night. Good to see.

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wof reply to Brian on Mar 10 at 11:38
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If the Sixers could keep this entire roster intact and add just one player to it, what one player would you add?

What one player do you think would make this team as good as it could be and be a legitimate contender for the next 5 years?

Dwight Howard. They'd be the best defensive team in the league with Howard and a legit championship contender, imo.

Is it wrong I'd rather have Andrew Bynum. Something about Dwight I'm not sure I like.

Do you have to take Bynum's knees along with him?

Dwight's a much better player and more durable. I'm going to say it makes you crazy.

Dwights on my keeper league fantasy team, aside from his free throw shooting (and temper) there's just something about him.

I was ignoring Bynums knee and focusing on the fact that I feel he's a more complete offensive player than Howard. Remember he's like a third (fourth?) option on the lakers offensively. He doesn't need a team built around him (dwight does?).

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Tray reply to GoSixers on Mar 10 at 16:07
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I think Dwight's become a very good offensive player, as awkward as his game might look.

Are we talking in the realm of availability or in the realm of 'anyone you want'?

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wof reply to GoSixers on Mar 10 at 11:46
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Anyone you want, could be a pro, college, or HS player.

Howard would probably be my pick, too, because of such a void in the middle.

You think they are a top 4 team with Howard and capable of winning it all?

Where have all the great Centers gone, anyway?

Yeah, I absolutely think Collins would make this team w/ Howard into a dominant, dominant defense. Top four and a legit contender.

Someone mentioned that great centers cycle - there are down times then up times, but also basketball has changed, big men want to be more like dirk than like russell. The game evolves, and hence the players evolve too (again are these guys taught basic big man fundamentals in high school).

I guess Dwight (or someone like him) is the right answer.

Offensively, they'd be better than they are now, but still probably no better than maybe 8th-10th in the league in OFR w/ Dwight. Jrue would have to feast on open threes and Jodie would be a big part of the offense.

Jrue and Meeks would be great with Howard offensively. Jrue's drives and pick and rolls would become much more effective. Iguodala would probably move to a more complementary role. They'd have to find a legit face-up 4 IMO, with rebounding less of a concern with Howard, Jrue, Iguodala, and Turner all being + rebounders for their position.

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Pete reply to Brian on Mar 10 at 13:12
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I don't know how realistic obtaining Dwight would be, but if he were interested in coming to the sixers (since it is all about what the stars want these days...) what would be a realistic deal that the organization would do?

I had a debate with a friend where he said that Jrue would be the #1 trade piece in such a deal, and I was strongly opposed stating that the sixers are young and need to build for the future with those young guys as their main focus.

Now if orlando were to offer Dwight and require that Jrue be included in the package, I'm not sure you could turn that down. However I would never use the phrase or term #1 trade piece when referring to Jrue.

Thoughts?

Well we weren't talking realistic - just talking best piece :)

I don't believe the sixers could add a high quality piece without giving up key parts of their core...

Well my reasoning is that everybody is a trade piece. Who gets dealt is more about the guy they are obtaining. If they can get a superstar like Howard, Jrue should get traded with no questions asked.

Ohh just imagine a lineup of Jrue/Meeks/Iguodala/Young/Howard. They would be unstoppable on both ends of the floor IMO, as soon as they get some experience and maturity.

And yes - turn on sports radio

First call I listen to - bashing Iguodala - with full support of the hosts.


Couldn't sleep last night after that loss.. The image still stuck in my head is Lou's clean steal called as a foul.. that was the turning point in my mind.

I think the point about the big crowd and learning to play in front of it is significant. This is yet another good argument for playing to make the playoffs vs. tanking (this year)... at some point your players need to learn to succeed in these situations. Don't go telling that to Sir Charles though...

The good news is they get to do it again vs. Boston. I watched them play with Jeff Green a few days ago, actually was very impressed with how he seemed to fit in with the team. At the same time, they are now an easier matchup for us. Should be a good one.


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