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Welcome to the NBA, Mark Jackson

Sean K on Jan 1 at 4:08

Great job by the team to step up tonight and get the win on the road. It seemed like they realized that they underperformed the night earlier and were not going to let a lesser team (especially one with one of their best players out again) sneak past them. Happy New Years to everyone out there! It was a great game to set the tone for 2012.

smh1980 on Jan 1 at 6:47

Collins on Hawes' improved passing from last year til now.

'I used to kid him, I'd say, 'Spencer, if you are going to start out turning the ball over the first play of the game, you might as well kick it into the stands so we can get our defense back and at least it's not a fastbreak.' -on Philly.com


The Greek on Jan 1 at 8:56

Brian before the season started I believe that you said that you thought that Lou would pick up his option and I agreed with you at that time.

I know that it's only 4 games in be he looks better then ever, on offense at least and the more he plays like this the better chance that someone will give him a 4-5 year contract. Wouldn't this be the best time to trade him, meaning from now until the trade deadline?

IMO it's either give him 8 milion a year which I don't want to do.

Let him walk and get nothing, which I also don't want to do.

OR, trade him by the break


I've said pretty consistently that he's going to opt out this summer. I'd probably agree that they should trade him, but they won't, and they really can't if their goal is to win as many as possible this year.

The Greek reply to Brian on Jan 1 at 9:44

My bad my old age is clouding my memory. Ok so if they don't trade him then what do you think the chances are that they sign him to a long term contract once he opts out?

Dwight reply to The Greek on Jan 1 at 11:38

I you're going to trade Lou, you might as well amnesty Brand and trade Iggy.

Lou has been our best player this season.

Jason reply to Dwight on Jan 1 at 12:00

Problem is Lou is going to get paid more than the sixers can offer next off-season. Can't pay 7-8 million for a pg when you have Jrue.

Rick reply to Jason on Jan 2 at 19:29

Is everyone sure next year is a player option for Lou? HoopData says yes, but HoopsHype says it is NOT a player option.
I tried googling news stories from when he signed, but they don't have the specifics.

This is where I get my info, and they've never steered me wrong. They say player option.

Rick reply to Brian on Jan 2 at 19:43

Thanks Brian.

Give Lou Jrue's money. Williams produces night in night out. Jrue is a joke. The only value to Jrue's game is the comic relief when his passes fly into the second row of the stands, or when Iguodala tries to hit him with a pass for a 3 on 0 and he runs AWAY from the ball.

To be fair though, it's really the fans fault. The guy didn't show anything in college, and he certainly hasn't show anything in the NBA, yet everyone on this blog seems to have a hard-on for him.

You know a guy is destined for greatness when his own momma can't spell his name right.

CB reply to J on Jan 1 at 11:25

Cool story bro.

HW reply to J on Jan 2 at 0:19

you mean like Dwyane Wade?

Super hypothetical coming...

If Lou and Hawes keep up this level of play into February (Lou averaging 20 ppg on 47% shooting and Hawes averaging 12 pts 12.5 reb and almost 2 blocks a game), what are the chances Otis Smith bites on Lou, Hawes, Iggy, and future 1st rounder for Dwight and throw ins?

Does a month and a half of exceptional numbers plus the "their still young and reaching their potential" thinking get us anywhere close?

Can't trade Hawes, basically. He has the right to refuse a trade, and since he's on a 1 year contract, he'll lose his bird rights if he's traded. In short, there's no way he ever agrees to a trade.

Spencer for hire reply to Derek Bodner on Jan 1 at 17:36

Derek, good info. I was thinking the same thing because any trade for Dwight most likely has to include a big.

I know its early but lets give it up to Spencer Hawes I gotta give props when its due.

Even in Vucevic's limited minutes is obvious to see that he is more than a "nothing" as some people have labelled him on this blog. If Collins can find him minutes to keep his confidence up and he can get a feel of the NBA game he will be a big part of the teams rotation by mid-season.

stan reply to KellyDad on Jan 1 at 12:37

Right now I put him in the same class as Semih Erdin.

Vucevic is clearly an NBA-quality center. He has proved the doubters wrong in my opinion.

4 games...and our leader in rebounds, ASSISTS, STEALS (!!!) and blocks, is Spencer Hawes. Is he team MVP so far?

Good Q, I'd say it's a close race between him and LW. Maybe I'd give the edge to Hawes, considering how improved he showed to be, in every aspect of his game.
Lou is basically "simply" in one of his hot stretches, but more or less he's the same player, he just added some more dimes & threes.
Hawes looks totally different form the wooden C we used to see in his first games, do you remember him then? He could barely walk...

jkay reply to MikeW on Jan 1 at 15:19

Gotta give credit where it is due.
Longevity - TBD

Johnnylaptop on Jan 1 at 14:35

Happy New Year, Thanks Brian, for this great site. Number one Sixer blog, your write up's are informative and spot on. You talk about what's important. Contributors are top notch. Lot's of information is available here from your bloggers, again, Happy New Year.

khouse reply to Johnnylaptop on Jan 1 at 17:17

I'll second that as given its depth of information/analysis, this blog rocks!

Gotta say I love how I'm no long solo on the Hawes train. Welcome aboard!

gotta say, something else seeing our bench player leading our team in ppg and carrying team and Hawes playing for a contract but doing it pretty well. I dont agree with the jrue statement, jrue has shown flashes of potential, there is a reason he was picked for the somphmore game, will he be what we expect, we dont know, like turner he shows no consistency, sometimes he looks like a star in the making and other times a average point guard.

J reply to Dave on Jan 1 at 20:38

"jrue has shown flashes of potential" That would be great if this was the YMCA, but this is the NBA. Lou has shows 10 times as many "flashes of potential" as Jrue has, so why don't we give him the same level of consideration? It's not like he's old or anything. I can't understand what everyone sees in Jrue. Somebody's job must have been on the line when they picked this kid, and now they're trying to market him like crazy.

Jrue Holiday. The emperor has no clothes. Don't believe the hype.

I wonder if Timofey Mosghov is available. I would trade Voose, Brack, and a conditional 1st

I wouldn't trade a toilet seat for Mosgov, let alone 3 young assets. Mosgov is a complete stiff.

Spencer for hire reply to stoned81 on Jan 1 at 17:15

A little early to rip Mosgov, from what somebody said a while back; it takes the euros a little adjustment period when they get to the N.B.A. . G.Karl moved Nene to p.f. so he must see him as a defensive difference maker.

Not to mention that it doesn't hurt to have 2 bigs bodies on the court at the same time to help clog the middle as well!

That's fair, but even conceding that, I wouldn't trade Vucevic, Brackins, or a conditional 1st individually for Mosgov, let alone as a package.

Spencer for hire reply to stoned81 on Jan 1 at 17:30

I always felt it best to have centers with different skillsets when it comes to a starter and backup and if Spencer is our future center I would prefer a defensive guy backing him up. But maybe Vucevic can become that.

Guys a question; Collins has stated that the backup bigs role here is to defend and rebound since there are scorers galore on our bench. Does Spieghts have value league wide if he just filled a different role, like Thad's. If a team has defenders on its 2nd unit wouldn't he work in that situation.

Look what Ryan Anderson is doing next to Dwight.

I think Speights could be good for a team somewhere. He's a big with talent, there aren't too many of them in the world. But I don't think any team would offer more than a 2nd round pick for Speights, and in my opinion it would be absurd to trade him for a 2nd-rounder. Speights has more value to us as injury insurance or as someone to foul Dwight Howard 6 times, than a 2nd-round pick which is virtually worthless.

Spencer for hire reply to stoned81 on Jan 1 at 17:41

I was thinking if Thorn put a package together for Dwight how Spieghts could play next to him and be a weapon like Anderson is now.

Dwight could hide a lot of his warts like I used to think Sammy would.

South Broad reply to stoned81 on Jan 1 at 18:14

I'll give you he's big, but what exactly is his talent?

mopey reply to South Broad on Jan 1 at 18:24


Remember back when we thought he could be a poor mans Amare? Now he's just a poor man's Glen Davis.

South Broad reply to mopey on Jan 2 at 11:28

Big Baby will actually go to the rim from time to time.

It's feels so weird to watch that and see how many times he would actually attempt a move towards the hoop and finish it. Now, he just jacks up a 20 footer at even the slightest opening of a window to get a shot off.

He's athletic, he can shoot.

I know its early but lets give it up to Spencer Hawes I gotta give props when its due.

@sam_amick: Shocking Kings statement released regarding DeMarcus Cousins, who was sent home from the team's home game against New Orleans tonight.Kings coach Paul Westphal says Cousins demanded to be traded: "When a player continually, aggressively, lets it be known that he is unwilling/unable to embrace traveling in the same direction as his team, it cannot be ignored indefinitely."

im not surprised

Brian, you will be happy: your buddy Cousins has demanded to be traded.


Nice way to get respect and improve his reputation.
(How about Speights for Cousins? lol)

lmao, good timing for that move, also: immediately after reaching 32% shooting. Classic

Get DMC!

YoungGun13 on Jan 1 at 20:13

Is Westphal such a bad coach that the Kings fans are giving Cousins a pass on this? I know I supported anyone who rebelled against Jordan back in the day, but I can't believe Westphal would have made this up, as Cousins' agent is claiming. The Kings fans online are mostly mad at Westphal, wanting him gone, completely glossing over the fact that their prized second round pick is a certified loon. I can't say I follow the team enough to know what's going on.

I'm not saying Collins has any plans, but if he's planning on making any early adjustments, I wouldn't be surprised if he does it now.

He has a couple of practice days and they are coming off a good win. Last year he made changes when things were going well.

I hope to god that the Sixers don't trade for Cousins.

regarding the Kings & Westphal, i think some of the fans are reacting to comments like this:

"I just try to get open as I can and create," Evans said. "It's no real set for me, nobody really in the offense. Just pass, cut. We lost; nobody really knows what to do. I think that's what's really hurting us right now."

"What offense?" [DeMarcus] Cousins replied when asked about the Kings' most obvious weakness. "I really don't want to say anything."

Tray reply to Mike on Jan 1 at 23:00

Westphal's easily one of the 3 worst coaches in the league, and he looks like he's lost it with that beard he decided to grow this season. But Cousins is a loon.

Bismack got 20 minutes today. 6 points, 8 possessions (2-6 from the line, that's 2-8 on the season), 6 boards, 2 blocks, 3 fouls, 1 turnover. Ty, 17 points on 11 shots, 10 assists, 2 turnovers. I'm going to go out on a controversial limb here; I think Lawson, Lowry and Rubio are three more points whose peak years will be better than Jrue's. Don't know if I'd put Wall in that group, though. He had his first good game of the season tonight (19, 7, 8, 1 turnover), but he's been awful so far this year.

Rich reply to Tray on Jan 2 at 0:00

OK, I can see how Westphal's a bad coach. Had that great Phoenix team in 93, but it's been all downhill since Space Jam for him.

I still don't understand how he's wrong for not sending a guy home who yell throughout the locker room "TRADE ME NOW." I just think it's justifiable to suspend that guy, not just focus on a coach's ego as the Sacramento fans have been doing.

I just don't want to hear Cousins is "misunderstood" and "a great guy" again. He's proven to be really difficult, and as unprofessional as it gets so far in this career. People can change, but nobody should describe him in terms as if that will eventually happen.

Yeah I completely agree. But at the same time, I can understand the angst of the Kings fans if they think Westphal will be fired after this season. It would be annoying to lose a player because he didn't get along with the coach, only to see the coach leave the season after anyways. I'd feel the same way if Collins and Turner started butting heads and then Collins had Turner shipped out of town, only to see Collins then retire a year later.

I can definitely see Cousins going to a team like the Celtics. They are a well-disciplined team who can make a head case like Cousins work. They are also madly desperate for a center and some youth.

I kind of doubt Cousins gets traded, but if they did put him on the market, there would be teams willing to take the risk. He's only 20 and he's big, there will be teams willing to think they can turn him around based on his size and skills. It probably won't work out, but someone would take the plunge.

I always think it's funny when guys like Cousins bitch about the coach, though. He's been beyond useless since he set foot in the league, Westphal gave him 2,309 minutes and a 27.2% usage rate last season. This year, his usage rate is even higher (29.9%) and he's been even worse.

Westphal is being a bad coach in that he's giving Cousins any minutes/touches at all, but Cousins probably doesn't think he's getting enough looks.

Would anyone send ET plus speights for Cousins? Coach could groom him to replace Elton while working on his attitude. He could be spoon fed minutes with the 2nd unit for now. ET could take SF minutes from Salmons. Sac would be set at the 1,2 & 3 positions going forward.

Cin reply to sfw on Jan 2 at 9:18

Tyreke Evans/Jimmer Fredette/Isaiah Thomas
Marcus Thornton
John Salmons/Donte Greene/Francisco Garcia (DNP-CD's all season)

So where are the minutes again?
The 76ers won't make a trade unless they are out of playoff contention by the deadline or someone offers them a piece at pennies on the dollar. Continuity!

sfw reply to Cin on Jan 2 at 9:29

Donte Greene,Francisco Garcia, Isaiah Thomas? Salmons is better in limited minutes.

Tyreke Evans,Jimmer Fredette & Marcus Thornton only matter. He can play small forward with them.

I'd rather send this years no. one plus Speights for him but their will be other offers for him.

Spencer for hire reply to sfw on Jan 2 at 10:04

I had said to my brother after watching Sacramento play that Cousins wouldn't be a happy camper because their guards are all looking for their points first, and distributing second.

That seems to be Cousin's main issue, the offense, because the 2 times I watched him he was giving good defensive effort. He would thrive here with all the unselfishness and a package of Spieghts and the Vuce may get him IF he was on the trade market.

I would go so far as Spieghts/Vucevic and this years #1 to get a guy of his talent level and put him into what looks like a positive envirement here. Heck, look how Hawes has responded to leaving Sacramento.

Hawes, 4 games. And a year's delay on that response. Predictably, he finds starch in an election year. Will he vow to blow up Howard's nuclear arsenal? Will he cry momma tears when the going gets playoffs-tough? Will he average 9-9-9 by season's end? Stay tuned for the next episode of "Hawes's Claws."

jkay reply to Dollar Bill on Jan 2 at 10:56


Spencer for hire reply to Dollar Bill on Jan 2 at 11:57

All good questions but his improvement started last year when at the end of the season he was getting 28 mpg. on a team that made the playoffs [his first time] and his rebound rate was his highest ever.

If he continues it will be one less hole to fill hopefully. :)

Agree, he's now on the chart with an arrow-up. Has a decent beat and you can dance to it. But here come the Beatles, the Stones and the Dave Clark Five!

Evan Turner makes no sense for SAC with Tyreke as their franchise guy. Zero. And why are they going to trade "franchise guy 1b" for spare parts that can't even crack a rotation and a mid-round draft pick?

Either way this is all crackheaded trade talk that won't ever come to fruition.

Why would you bail out the Kings by sending the guy you drafted OVER Cousins to start?

I could see trading Thad + Speights but they aren't moving Turner there.

Because Turner is a disappointment and at his best all he has shown is that he might be a capable starter in the future. Cousins has a lot of potential and a lot more than Evan.

You're doing yourself a disservice by judging a (barely) second year guy so harshly, especially considering his expected trajectory. As far as potential goes, it's worth a whole lot of nothing if it remains unfulfilled. At least Turner has taken steps, if only baby steps, forward in his development. Can you say the same for Cousins?

from the archives of Brain Ward, DF
If it seems odd that the team's worst player in their regular rotation's performance seemed so tied to the team's success, that's a testament to the team's lack of depth at the five and the price they wind up paying when they have to rob Peter to pay Paul (move Brand to the five to strengthen that position).

As natural as it is to be skeptic, it's probably more prudent to just breakout the pom-poms.
Go Hawes! MVP!
RT @stoned81

haha respect

Memphis blues: Grizz starters soared to 21 aggregate pts. yesterday, shot 8-41 in 40 pt. slaughter by Bulls. And the amazingly tough 'Veal' Scalabrine only got 5 min. of PT for the victors.

Tom Moore on Jan 2 at 15:51

Sixers Monday video interviews: Spencer Hawes, Doug Collins on Hawes' terrific start. Hawes leads the NBA in field goal percentage (67.6) and is third in rebounding (12.5) after four games:


Tom Moore on Jan 2 at 17:20

Collins on Hawes: 'There’s no reason why he couldn’t be a top 10 rebounder in the league this year. I told him to think about top 5.'

Tom Moore on Jan 2 at 18:15

Doug blows a lot o' smoke (with winning intention of course). Hawes top 5? Only if he plays 'im full 48 and whispers in Harvey Pollack's ear. Next thing ya know, he'll be praising Williams' unselfishness, Jrue's evenness, Iggy's runway technique and DiLeo's college career at Tennessee Tech & LaSalle.

Looks like I picked the right day to be away from my computer. Hawes is the center of the future and the Sixers should trade for DeMarcus Cousins. A pair of wonderful thoughts.

Charlie H reply to Brian on Jan 2 at 21:18

Yeah, the site was migrated to an alternate universe while you were away.

Anyone else in the NY area? This Time Warner thing is going to screw me on the 11th, so I think I'm going to head to the game.

knicks down 17 at the half to the raptors

Boston is also trailing Washington:), for some reason I think both teams will pull out a win

Statman on Jan 2 at 21:06

Happy New Year to everyone. A few leftover comments from the weekend and observations over the first four games:

- I was disappointed to find out that Al Jefferson wasn't playing for the Jazz; the Sixers lost out on a few easy baskets in his absence (and it didn't help that Favors had a career game).
- The Jazz game was lost in the 2nd and 4th, mainly because the bench got outplayed. If there was a game for Coach Collins to veer from his usual strategy and rotations, this was it. But the Jazz also played way over their heads.
- In the Warriors game, the bench went back to being the force it usually is, but what won the game was excellent defense. After three so-so (for him) man-to-man defensive performances, I thought Iguodala was excellent in holding Dorell Wright to 2-10 for 4 points, and he also challenged well on switches (one challenge of a Curry 3 comes to mind). And the team made the right adjustment to simply double Curry on the P/R, usually leaving the center open. Of course, it helps when the guy left alone is limited, like Udoh or Biedrins.
- Mark Stein of ESPN ranked the 76ers 9th in his Power Rankings and mentioned Hawes as an early candidate for MIP. I'm guessing Hawes won't lead the league in FG pct., but I'm hopeful the good rebounding will continue.
- If Lou keeps up his play, there won't be any more talk of Good Lou vs. Bad Lou, it'll just be Sweet Lou.
- I thought Jrue showed some signs of better passing in the Warriors game; with better luck, he would have had 6-7 assists. Also, as much as he's struggled the first four games, he is averaging 15.5 PPG. If he can get those points without taking so many shots outside the flow of the offense, all the better.
- Helped along by the two blowout wins, the Sixers are currently 3rd in PPG, 2nd in FG%, 3rd in 3P%, 5th in points-per-shot, 2nd in adjusted FG%, 9th in points allowed, 6th in opponent FG%, 1st in opponent points per shot, 4th in opponent adjusted FG%. They are in the middle of the pack (15th) in defensive rebound pct.
- I'll believe it when I see it, but the Sixers' schedule gives them a good shot at something like 15-6 by the end of January. Guess how long it's been since they were above .500 after 20 games? Answer: 02-03. None of the last 4 playoff versions of the Sixers (04-05, 07-08, 08-09, 10-11) have been better than 9-11 after 20 games. Imagine what a good start combined with their usual good finish would get them ...

Good stuff.

Hawes' rebounding has been very good, and unexpected, but I guess it's at least somewhat sustainable. His FG%, however, is not. He's shooting 67% from 16-23 feet, and he's 8 for his last 8. With his shot distribution (a little under half of his shots are long twos), and his career marks being closer to 40% from there, the field goal percentage is going to plummet.

He's also causing more problems w/ his passing/ballhandling since the first game (8 turnovers/7 assists).

The hope has to be that he'll continue to rebound and when he reverts to the mean in terms of shooting and turning the ball over, his role within the offense will be reduced to the point where it doesn't drag the whole team down.

The best part of Lou's game, to me, has been how he's setting people up w/ his drive. Thad especially. I think those dump offs are a big part of why he's scoring so efficiently. In the past, he'd try to force a shot, or take an off-balance pull-up when the defense adjusted to cut off his drive. Now he's giving the ball up.

John Schuhmann ranked the Sixers 15th, which I found kind of odd considering he's probably the national writer with the best grasp of advanced stats. The Sixers are really like top 5 in the league right now when you're looking at OFR/DFR and differential.

One more thing about Hawes, he's getting to the line even less than he has in the past. In fact, about 50% less, and he was pitiful in that area to begin with.

Heh, Knicks lost to the Raptors.

Johnnylaptop on Jan 2 at 22:31

also, Hawks beat the Heat, 100-92

JaVale McGee- 17 pts (8-9), 14 rebs, 3 blocks. I could care less that he is a jackass and an idiot. I would trade every big man on our roster for him. I hate Mo Speights.

I think he's the type of guy Collins could work with. He's stupid, but I don't see him as destructive. He doesn't think he deserves more touches, doesn't need to take 15-footers, just wants to dunk and block shots. They'd never trade him for the garbage we have to offer in terms of bigs, though. And I'm not sure which smalls they'd be interested in. I'd trade Turner for him.

Stan reply to Brian on Jan 3 at 0:39

If they asked for Evan in return I would have to think long and hard about it.

Speights? You don't hate 'em like Doug. 0 minutes on season. M16 must have lost ALL of his ability.

Advanced stats: Sixers have played 1 good team and 3 bad teams. 2-2 record. Williams, Iguodala & Hawes have shot out of their minds. That will cease. Holiday, Meeks & Brand have disappointed. They should improve. Turner is a young man without a country (the basketball). Young showin' energy and deft ability to miss jumpshots. Voose can tie his sneakers. Speights needs to step up, say "yes, coach" instead of "word, dogg" to Doug. The next 62 will determine team's fate.

Williams, Iguodala & Hawes have shot out of their minds. That will cease. Holiday, Meeks & Brand have disappointed.

That's what's going to define it, right there. When those three guys come back down to earth, will the other three pick up the slack to keep the offense somewhere near where it is right now? Turner has actually been worse than he was last year, in terms of efficient scoring, much worse. I guess you can hope he's going to improve, but I'm not sure there's much reason to expect it.

Agree. 'Those three and Turner' contributions/questions will weigh as season goes deeper.

MCT reply to Brian on Jan 3 at 0:41

Think it's a bit early to be pulling out advanced stats on anyone just yet?

You don't really have to go to advanced stats on Turner. He's shooting 39/0/56 FG/3P/FT. His rebounding, steals and TOV are solid for the minutes he's getting, but everything looks pretty much like last year to this point. Forgetting the stats, he looked much better in the first two, but the last two he's looked exactly like he did last season.

We've also seen much less of JTI in the past two games. A total of 1:57. In the first two, they played 14 minutes together, which still isn't all that much.

MCT reply to Brian on Jan 3 at 0:56

It's too early to look at any stats in my opinion, for anyone.

That's fine. Forget stats. Hawes, Iguodala and Lou have been better than they were last season. Brand, Jrue and Jodie have been worse. Turner has been about the same, probably a little worse. No matter what you look at, they've played four games and some stuff has happened. Doesn't mean it'll continue to happen, but just ignoring it doesn't make a whole lot of sense.

Dwight reply to Brian on Jan 3 at 3:26

I think turner is miles ahead of where he was at the beginning of lat season. He looked lost in the offense and didnt know how to get open off the ball. This year he looks much more comfortable.

Two Sense reply to Dwight on Jan 3 at 10:54

He still struggles to get open off the ball, or furthermore, isn't even being used alot off the ball. When he's on the ball he still makes insignificant passes at the top of the key or dribbles himself into a crowd/trouble. In what ways is he miles ahead?

Expectations tempered; wise.

MCT reply to Brian on Jan 3 at 0:58

Meaning it's too early to read too much into stats, I don't mean we can't analyze them at all.

I would make this trade just to screw over NJ- http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=6reast6

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