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Sixers Lose Their Way In Miami

A little surprised u didn't mention iguodala in the write up he has to do better than 4pts 3reb 3ast I understand he has to guard lebron but there's no way in hell they beating the heat if his stat line is that

He belongs in that same paragraph as Jrue, so does Brand.

I also failed to mention Voose, thought he played a great game up to the injury.

Good point Marcus

The lineup of JTIYB was mentioned a couple of days ago as the closing lineup for this team and while they have generally performed great, i was actually intrigued to see a JTIYV lineup for the first time this season. It finally happened last night for only a few minutes. Hopefully Collins will go to that lineup more. Really intrigued what they can do on both ends of the floor.

+/- wise Young, Vucevic and Holiday lead the team this year and pairing them with the best wing defenders on the team looks like recipe for success to me.

The Sixers were put in an even worse position up front when Nikola Vucevic sprained his knee and had to be helped off the court, so hopefully we can chalk the fourth quarter implosion up to that and move on

This pretty much sums up what i thought about the game too. It's a little worrisome and encouraging at the same time to depend so much on a rookie, despite Hawes injury and all.

I thought that the front court was fine and they didn't need any depth (even before his injury last night) because they had 5 'big men'?

They are fine in terms of depth. They have 5 big men i the rotation. You keep changing the subject to not having a top level big which is different from having depth.

Actually no I don't. My point has. Always been the Same and your using Thad as a big man is always dismissed by me because I don't care what position he plays. He isn't a big man.

Yes you do. I'll say it again. NO WARM BODY available in free agency will be better that the guys already on the roster. You are stating a problem listing a non-existant solution.

What the team needs to do right now is do a wait and see (react) approach with Howard.

If you are so smart name a guy who is available in free agency and you think will earn legitimate minutes and help the Sixers inside.

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tk76 reply to Xsago on Jan 22 at 18:04
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If the plan is to wait on Howard then that is almost like having no plan. Howard is a great pipe dream but I sure hope they are working on a legit plan B for acquiring a long term answer at PF and C assuming Howard ends up elsewhere- which is a 99% likelihood.

Personally the whole dwight howard thing is purely fan fantasy as far as i'm concerned

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tk76 reply to GoSixers on Jan 22 at 18:31
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It's a perfectly acceptable dream. I just would not put the team's long term plans on hold waiting on the pipe dream.

Also, I still think they need to get some sort of young franchise star in place before they worry to much about breaking up what they have. As much as I appreciate the strides they are making through team play, depth and chemistry I would blow up a big chunk of it for a Chris Paul or deron Williams, even if that is a position of relative strength right now.

Sure it would be better to sign Howard as o FA or get him in a trade since he is the best fit, but I would choose a star in their prime who did not fit and then make more moves to make it work over continuing to win without a legit franchise player.

Again, not minimizing the quality of their current squad or calling for them to blow it up. Just saying they ate not going to incrementally build aegit contender with a few more nice pieces. They are basically the Hawks under Woodson right now.

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South Broad reply to tk76 on Jan 22 at 18:36
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"Just saying they ate not going to incrementally build aegit contender with a few more nice pieces. They are basically the Hawks under Woodson right now."

Couldn't disagree more with these two statements. I'm a firm believer in a superstar, but this really isn't very representative of this team, or their coach.

Sorry for the typos. hard posting on my phone. Glad you were able to get the gist.

I think the Hawks form 1-2 years ago (prior to overpaying JJ) are similar to this Sixer team because they were a quality team (53 wins) full of talent but who clearly were not going to contend if they only incrementally added to that talent. The only way that Hawks team becomes a contender is if they had traded some of their good players for a truly great player- which they failed to do. Then they overpaid JJ and it was game over.

This year's Sixer team is younger, but is on par in terms of talent. Likewise, the Sixers will not contend if they end up simply replacing Brand with a good PF and then signing their currnet players to pricey extensions. Even adding another good player at center (say a Nene or Tyson Chandler) would not make them a legit title contender over the next few seasons IMO- although it would make them as close as you can get without being a real contender. Probably nearly on par with the good Pacer teams during the Jordan era (Miller/Jackson/Smits/Davis), but not quite as good as that team- which made the Finals once.

If you're saying go ahead and blow the cap space if you can land a star now, regardless of position, I don't think anyone's arguing with you. But what's the point of taking Howard/Love completely off the table to make an incremental improvement this season? When I say the plan is to go after Dwight Howard, what I'm really saying is that whatever you do it, the goal needs to be to be in a position to get Howard should a miracle happen and he actually wants to come to Philly.

I would not have gone for Nene and given up all hope at Howard, but more because Nene is to old and not the impact player they need- even if he is the right fit.

Ignoring how it effects your odds of landing Howard, I would trade away Jrue and ET (and more) for someone like CP3, since he is 26 and you get a huge window to find the right players to win with him as your best player.

Again, not speaking specifically about CP3, since his case involved variables about resigning and lading DH. More the general idea of landing a guy who is top 2 at his position and 26 or under. Like when Thorn traded for Kidd.

And to be clear, I do not put Love in the league.

Love is top 2 at his position, imo, but I wouldn't trade away the core of the team for him either. Actually, I'm not sure you can do that w/ any guys who may be available currently, because all of them require an extension after you get them, and none of them will sign the extension if you gut the team to get them.

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marcus reply to Brian on Jan 22 at 21:39
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Love is the best pf in the NBA

So would you equate him with the guys a listed below?

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marcus reply to tk76 on Jan 22 at 21:44
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Be that as it may so far this year IMO he's the top pf in the NBA

Yeah, but do you think he is a "franchise player in his prime." Does Love + and equally good guard (say Nash in his prime or a bit worse) get you a multiple chances at a ring with a serviceable supporting cast?

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marcus reply to tk76 on Jan 22 at 22:01
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Imo he's a franchise Guy

O.K. I just disagree. I think he's a half a notch below. Maybe a Reggie Miller level but not a franchise anchoring player.

10- best in game (Lebron), gets you 60 wins with almost any team
9- franchise player (CP3) Can get you 60 wins with a solid squad and 45 wins if healthy on a bad team
8- All Star but only a piece of the puzzle. LOVE. A team can be terrible despite his great play.
7- Near All Star. A great peice to have on a winning team (Iguodala)
6- Good player, can be a star on a given night but either major holes or major inconsistency (Jrue right now.)

Can you contend w/ three 7's and an 8? Or a two 7's and two 8's?

What did Detroit have, because that would be the blueprint.

I don't really see an 8 on this team. But I guess if they had Love and kept the rest they could develop into:

Love 8
Jrue 7
ET 7 (probably a reach)
Iggy 7
Thad 6.5

To be honest w/ you, I think Dirk is probably an 8 on that scale. He's not carrying a bad team to 45 wins.

Dirk gets a tom of credit for improving the weak areas of his game... but he probably gets a bit too much credit for last year. He has always been a tremendous player, but they won the title because of a team effort, chemistry and finally playing defense. I don't think you can underestimate the value of having a smart guy like Kidd on the floor or having a bunch of other shooters who can spread the floor. They were a pretty unique, undefendable team because of the types of shooters they had. No team in my memory both hits the 3 and long two as effectively as they did. It is tough to take that away.

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marcus reply to tk76 on Jan 22 at 22:12
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Come on now u going to compare lebron and cp3 teams with the Minnesota that's not even right

I'm comparing him to other franchise players.

Who did Lebron have when he made the Finals?

IMO, Lebron on Minny and give them Al Jeff instead of Love and they win 45+ games (82 game season.)

If he is top 2 that means the PF position is kinda weak right now. BTW, he was not one of the 6 guys who are really PF's who made an All NBA team last year. Historically top 2 PF would mean:

Barkley/Malone
KG/Dirk
Duncan/KG/CWebb(prime)

Those guys would probably be #1 or #2 rated PF's for every year from 82-09, with Kemp, Sheed and a few others having career years mixed in.

Not sure what you mean. Duncan was a PF when Robinson played, since then he's been a C, no matter how they want to classify him.

Right now, it's Dirk and Love as best PFs in the league imo.

I looked at all NBA 1st and 2nd team. Duncan was always a hybrid PF/C. Sort of like how Horford, Sheed, KG could be a PF or C based on need and personnel.

I'm saying that over the past 25+ years the 2 players who could be the best PF's in the game were impact franchise players that were maybe 50% of what you needed to be a contender(regardless of whether their team needed to play them at C, because the position in some schemes in interchangeable.)

The "best PF's in the game" have typically been top level superstars worth giving up a ton for, even if it means taking a step back due to breaking up your team. I'm saying Love is not that guy. So if he is top 2 then to me that means the top level PF's are weak right now on a historical basis.

Do you disagree?

I'd probably agree w/ that, though even w/ his efficiency dipping a bit this year w/ insane usage, he's still having a huge impact for the T-Wolves. 2nd in the league in win shares. If his TS% increases as the year goes on, which it probably will considering the three terrible games in a row he's had, then I might change my mind a bit. Such a rare combination.

He's not a no-brainer centerpiece that you can just put anyone around and contend, but if you put the right people around him, I think he could be a centerpiece.

For example, if you can get Love to add to this team (subtracting Brand), I think you've got a chance to contend. Just need a 5 who can defend the rim.

I just don't agree. he is a good player with some unique skills. Much like Rodman was unique as a rebounder and man defender. Rodman was a great player but never a centerpiece.

Obviously I'm not saying Love has the same gaping holes in his game as Rodman. But overall he is probably a Reggie Miller or maybe Ray Allen level player and not a KG level player. KG led some terrible Minny teams to winning records because of his impact on both ends of the floor. Love helps you on both ends of the floor but I don't see him as a game changer on that level.

I'd like to see how he and Minnesota finish this year. Love has been better than Garnett was in his first three years. Though the TWolves were up to 45 wins by his third season.

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Tray reply to Brian on Jan 22 at 22:22
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Like I said in the last thread, Love's efficiency is right in line with how he shot the ball his first and second years. (His four TS% marks - .538, .549, .593, .541.) His third season is the outlier, and his huge efficiency gains last year are almost entirely traceable to his being one of the league's leaders in three-point shooting at .417, after having shot 33% the year before, 35% in college, and 2-19 his rookie year. (The other big difference is that he had a career year in foul shooting last year.) This year he's at 35% and back to being a not incredibly efficient player. This is who he really is, as a shooter and scorer. This can even be seen in last year's splits. After an average start shooting the ball in November, Love shot 49-99 from three in December and January. If he kept that up he would have been by far the best shooter in the league. But in February he shot 36%, and in March shot 35%, like he's shooting now. His career year last season is basically a function of two ridiculously hot months.

His dip in efficiency this "season" is a ridiculously cold three games. Like I said, let's see what happens the rest of the year. And the bump in efficiency wasn't just due to three point shooting and 5% better on his FT%, it was in large part due to the fact that increased the number of times he went to the line. He went from 5.8 FTA/36 min in his second year to 6.9 in his third year to 8.2 this year.

Three games ago he was shooting 44% from the floor with a 57% TS%. Let's re-examine in a couple weeks, see if he's suddenly become a gunner who can't hit anything, or if this was a blip.

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Tray reply to Brian on Jan 22 at 23:10
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But now you're cherry-picking, because before this current three-game cold streak, he had a three-game hot streak where he scored 97 points on 64 shots. So you want to rewind to the very end of his hot streak and discount the cold. If we throw both streaks out, before the hot streak, he was about where he is now. And like I said in the last thread, he hasn't suddenly become a gunner who can't hit anything - he's just become what he always was, a poor finisher (even in his best year, he made just 60% of his shots around the rim) and an average three-point shooter who gets to the line a lot.

Actually, prior to those hot three games, he was shooting 40% from three w/ a 56% TS%. I guess if you want to say only his bad games count, your theory holds water.

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Tray reply to Brian on Jan 22 at 23:19
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Also, an increased FTA/36 minute has nothing to do with TS%. The question is whether his FTA went up relative to FGA. And it didn't really. His rookie year, he shot .488 FTA/FGA. His second year that fell to .427. His third year it went back to .486, and this year it's at .488. Aside from his second year, he's shot about the same ratio of foul shots to shots every season. The difference between his third year and this, or his third year and his rookie year, isn't the foul shots, because rookie year = third year = this year on that. It's the three-point shot.

Maintaining his FTA/FGA while increasing his usage by nearly 6% is an accomplishment in and of itself.

Also, you're way off in saying his drop in TS% from last season is due to the fact that he's hitting less threes. He's taking a lot more threes, which is actually helping his TS%. The dropoff is in his % on two-pointers. He shot 47%, 47% and 48% on twos his first three seasons, he's down to 43.6% this season. If he was shooting his career average from two, his TS% would be 56.3.

And this uptick in usage amounts to 2.7 more shot attempts/36 minutes. Three-pointers (on which his TS% is 55% this season) make up 1.8 of those attempts. So he's shooting 0.9 more two-pointers per 36 minutes. That increased usage is what's responsible for a 4.4% drop in shooting percentage on twos?

It's early, his percentage on two-pointers will creep closer to his career number, that plus the threes he's making and his FT rate will pull the overall TS% up close to where it was last season.

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Tray reply to Brian on Jan 22 at 23:54
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Part of the decrease in two-point percentage is that, due to the increased usage, he's taking more long and mid-range twos this year than he ever has. In past years, he took between 2.5 and 2.8 shots from 10-23 feet. This year that's up to 4.6. As he has his entire career, he's only making a third of those shots.

The numbers don't really support that. He's averaging .7 more shots at the rim than he did last season/36 minutes. He's seeing a dip in his attempts from 3-9 feet (1.2/36 min, less), 10-15' is up by about .5 and 16-23 is up about .8/36. Essentially, he's taking more at the rim, and the loss in 3-9 foot shots is spread across 10-15 and 16-23. I don't see how that spread equates to gunning.

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marcus reply to tk76 on Jan 22 at 21:53
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I don't think all that matters the stats speak for themselves this yr so far he's the best with Blake second

Stats absoultely NEVER speak for themselves, and which stats are you using?

Again, I agree that he could arguably be the top PF in the game right now, but that says more about the level of the best PF's in the game than anything else.

Put love in the league 5 years ago and it would be hard for to be picked in the top 5 if you needed a guy top play PF for your team (again I am ignoring their official position.)

Duncan, Dirk, Garnett, Wallace, Sheed, Brand, Webber...

I would probably rather have had Ben Wallace as my PF in his prime because he gave you the rebounding with elite, impact defense. That to me is more important at the PF position than a guy whop can shoot long jumpers and pass (much like how all things equal, I'd rather have an elite shooter at SG than an elite rebounder like ET.) I'd probably take prime CWebb too, since he was a complete package.

Going w/ the voose for your avatar :)

I had to retire the Thad NBA logo for a while.

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Tray reply to Xsago on Jan 22 at 18:50
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I would bet you that there are half a dozen D-Leaguers who would be more useful than Lavoy Allen. Better than Tony Battie, no, certainly not.

I admit, I didn't have the stomach to sit through this whole thing, I turned it off midway in the fourth quarter when I think they cut it to 9 or 10, but it just seemed like a mess. And it wasn't just the defense, the offense in the fourth quarter was truly bad a lot of the time.

1-2 was my 'best case' scenario in this 3 game swing, so I shouldn't feel so bad about it I guess, but it just felt like the sixers weren't fully there in the second half, I never got the feeling that they thought they could win the game. The Voose injury was bad, and maybe that allowed them to 'give up' in a way cause they lost another big man, but it was just not a good game to watch or feel good about the team in a loss, which (at least in my case) is what you hope when the team you root for loses, that you can feel good about the effort they gave fourth

I mean hell, in the first half, sure give Chris Bosh all those open looks even when he starts making them and no it's not a 'win' if he takes that shot, uncontested or not if hes belieiving he can make it (and making it) without a hand in his face.

Maybe now they'll recognize how very barren their front court depth is, injury or not, voose has shown to be foul prone which pulls him from games and Hawes is now an injury risk.

Monday they play a team with a big man that had his way with the front court when they were all available

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Rich reply to GoSixers on Jan 22 at 14:37
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With Voose showing viability, the team has better front court depth than most when they are all healthy, 5 deep. Yes, they aren't Chicago, but Miami has a three-man big rotation and that's really it. Now they are shorthanded if Voose and Hawes miss extended time. I don't understand how the owners or team can really address the front court mix without making a trade and breaking up what they have. It seems that would be something the team is generally not ready to do.

Which one of them can play defense?

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Rich reply to GoSixers on Jan 22 at 14:55
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Well, considering the unit is only half of the best defensive team in the league, oh I don't know. I guess none of them can play defense.

Seriously though, you keep beating the drum that the ownership is failing miserably because they won't get a big man. What would you propose that they do? I am confused on how ownership stepping up has anything to do with getting a another frontcourt player this year.

I get that you're confused, but I'm really tired of explaining it, so I'm not going to do it again.

So far the new ownership has been less than impressive to me, period, and I've made it clear why, repeatedly

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Rich reply to GoSixers on Jan 22 at 15:29
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I don't care about your view on the ownership though, that's clear. For the most part, I feel the same way. Your idea that it's all their fault that we dont get another big man who is better than anything we have is baffling though. It's not a matter of them just stepping up and forking over money. If you don't want to explain something and just keep complaining about something that really isn't there, that's fine too.

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Darius reply to GoSixers on Jan 22 at 17:37
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Yes and you've been repeatedly proven wrong. Fact, there is no big man in the D-league or wherever else you want to look right now that will help this team in a meaningful way. Fact, ownership not going after some worse than mediocre center does not mean they are failing miserably. If you are saying that we should trade for a big man, look around the league. Every team wants more capable big men. There's a reason why there isn't a market flooded with them. You've been proven wrong, but you just keep repeating your erroneous points because you can't admit it.

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Tray reply to Darius on Jan 22 at 18:53
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Do you know the D-League that well that you can be so sure? How do I know that there isn't another Ivan Johnson still in the D-League?

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eddies' heady's reply to Tray on Jan 22 at 19:09
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That is exactly my feelings on the big man situation. And ironically Ivan Johnson was gonna be my example too. There surely has to be another of him out there that is better than Lavoy. Has to be. Who was that guy from Cornell someone linked to a week or so ago? He looked rather agile, if not capable, or at least more development-worthy than Lavoy though I admittedly haven't seen much of either.

Actually, when you look at the d-league rebounding leaders, or shot-blocking leaders, it's surprising how many of them have already been snatched up. Guys like Jerome Jordan, Malcolm Thomas, Mickell Gladness. That said, even if there is someone out there, I must say that, since I don't see us as a contender at all, I'm not sure why they should pay the minimum or whatever it would take to win a game or two more and fall a pick or two in the draft order.

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eddies' heady's reply to Tray on Jan 22 at 19:30
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You pay whatever it would take because no matter how much we see or how many numbers we look at, you can never ever predict what can happen in the playoffs, or even the march that secures your seeding there, particularly in a helter-skelter, condensed, highly unpredictable season. If precedents are to be considered, '99 says it all.

In this offseason, with the new wrinkles in the CBA, and the teams potential positioning within it, it may not be winning a game or two more as much as winning a round or two more, which at that point should supercede picking 25th or 27th.

I don't think it's really a money or a pick thing, for me. They basically have three options for meaningful minutes at the five when everyone is healthy, Hawes, Voose and Brand. They'll use Battie in a pinch as well. That's usually enough, it's more than a lot of teams have. Right now, they're down either one or two of those guys, so it looks like a weakness. Every team in the league would look super thin up front without their first and second string centers.

Basically, what we're talking about is a veteran's minimum guy who would never see the court unless you're down a couple of bigs. Fine, go out and get one now, he isn't going to make a difference, but get one. I don't see how not having a plan D at the five says anything about new ownership, though.

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eddies' heady's reply to Brian on Jan 22 at 19:51
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I guess this is where we disagree - you say a veteran's minimum guy would never see the court unless our current bigs are hurt. I tend to look at it like this 10-day or vet minimum guy may end up being better than 3 of the 4 guys they have manning the five now. Not as an overall player, but a better player at what is most lacking - rebounding and shot-blocking. That paint-protector type defender. Now is he out there? I'm not saying that's so, but it sure as hell is worth a try.

And my frustration with new ownership not testing this route says nothing about their outlook overall, short term or long term. I just simply think it's simpleton of them not to explore it, with an open spot, that's all.

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Rich reply to Brian on Jan 22 at 19:56
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Totally agree about the ownership, that's more of a front office thing. Lavoy Allen seems to be pretty bad, but he's had no impact on the season thus far, good or bad. Unless Allen has to play for an extended period (He might if both Hawes and Voose are hurt), there's no real need for a veteran guy. Also, if Ivan Johnson is the best case scenario, that guy will most likely make a very small impact.

Plus there are other ways around having to play that guy all that much. Evan Turner only plays 26 minutes now, so this would allow Collins to play him a lot more. He could take up some of those minutes. You could give Battie five more minutes a game for a little while too, he could probably handle that as well.

You can be 100% sure that we won't win the Finals. I agree that, as in '99, there's a tiny chance that a team like ours could make the Finals. But sure, a conference finals appearance would have some value in attracting free agents, so I take your point. In that case, the top choices seem to be, or at least include, Greg Smith, Marcus Lewis (the D-League's leading rebounder), and, surprisingly enough, Greg Ostertag, who's trying to make a comeback via the D-League and is supposedly playing well as Sean Williams's backup. (Williams himself, unfortunately, belongs to Dallas.)

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eddies' heady's reply to Tray on Jan 22 at 19:53
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Tiny chance or not, at least you see and recognize my point.

btw, Ostertag has officially called it a career due to his knees I think.

Greg Smith? Who's he? What was the guy's name linked to last week on here? Can't remember.

Ah, Ostertag's done. Greg Smith is not from Cornell, he's a talented guy from Fresno, was supposed to be a second round pick. You can google his draftexpress page.

Well said. Nice that you mentioned the Heat, imagine what would happen to them if Bosh and Anthony were out. They'd be left with what? Haslem and Curry up front? I'm not sure even LeBron can fix that kind of a front court for extended minutes.

The heat lost D'wyane Wade and one could argue that they are a better team...whatever you want to say to justify saying the big men are 'fine' go right ahead

The sixers big men (including thad) are all weak defensively - as a whole

Turner was by far our best player what the hell was Doug thinking and we really couldn't stop bosh he always kills us for some reason I can't stand it

Well - I'll tell you one thing - giving him open looks isn't a way to stop him

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marcus reply to GoSixers on Jan 22 at 11:24
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You definitely right about that. I really want to know what Doug was thinking by leaving Turner on the bench for so long

That was Doug being doug...for some reason the sixers seem to have this habit of 'going away' from whomever the hot player is in the first half, how many times has Elton Brand had a great first half (or first run) and then the team forgets he's on the floor.

My big concern right now is that it's been enough games to say the 'change' in Jrue's approach to the game is a coaching decision, and I don't like it.

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marcus reply to GoSixers on Jan 22 at 11:31
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Hopefully they can bounce back with a easy schedule ahead this week

An easy schedule if they were fully healthy. They were already down one big man, and now they're down two

And no - this doesn't mean they shouldn't have traded Speights, because Speights isn't useful on a team that cares about defense.

---this is stoned81 (under new, less reputation-harmful moniker)

I'm called a "conspiracy theorist" here but last night certainly bolstered my theory that Collins simply dislikes the guy and sometimes (almost always) acts on that dislike to the detriment of the team. I don't understand why this theory is so derided here, when it's patently obvious Collins is willing to bench players he dislikes (see Theo Ratliff, Mo Speights). People can harp all they want on Speights' defense, fine, he was still better than no one, and Lou and Meeks play no D yet they are his favorite sons. Ratliff was all D, so that excuse doesn't work there.

Because there are a lot more believable theories than a coach 'dislikes' a guy. It's a common statement of whiny fans when their 'guy' doesn't get enough minutes. It's ludicrous and asinine to say a coach doesn't like a guy when there are numerous other, more believable and credible theories.

That's why it's so derided. Your theory is the opposite of occam's razor.

What is the "more believable" explanation for not playing Turner until the game was almost out of reach in the 3rd when he was the best player on the team in the first half? Do you think he forgot he was there? What is the "more believable" explanation for not playing Speights one minute this season? I could see "defense" as the excuse for limiting Speights to say 10 minutes a game (although I wouldn't agree with it), but I see no way Collins didn't have something against Speights (and Ratliff back in the day) considering he got 0 minutes.

There are a lot of reasons for not playing speights more, bringing speights is doesn't strengthen your argument

1. no effort defensively
2. No passing
3. Black hole of shooting
4. Poor rebounding on either end of the court.

YOU WANT IT TO BE THAT DOUG HATES THE PLAYERS YOU LOVE

And it's obvious you won't believe any other reasonable explanation so I won't bother

(PS - your description of your name change was unecessary, your continued whining about Doug hating your favorite players gives it away immediately)

I never cared about Speights one way or the other. Certainly not one of my favorite players. He had 15 boards yesterday, so he can rebound. Meeks and LouWill are also black holes who play no D, so that works.

Honestly I think I'm giving Collins a break by saying he doesn't like these guys. If it's his basketball-knowledge that leads him to bench Turner in the third quarter and to think it's better to give away your backup big man for nothing than to play him a little, then that's even more of an indictment of his coaching skills.

1. I'm not a collins fan, but you'll forgive me if I defer to his basketball knowledge over yours

2. Coaches don't always make trades

3. Stop being like Tray and looking at the gross numbers in one game and say 'look he realily can rebound' - there's no context and it's beneath you

For instance, it's against the Kings one of the worse rosters in the league

I wasn't using the stat to say he's a superstar rebounder. Just that he's better than nothing, which is what we got for him.

Sam Dalember used to often post up huge rebounding numbers, against the Suns, and people used to use that to say Sam was 'improving' whereas if you paid attention you realized the suns hardly ever crash the offensive glass so getting big rebounding numbers against them isn't really that tough for a guy who can out jump the other player son his team :)

I suppose keeping players fresh for the long season as opposed to worrying about just one game is a reasonable explanation by the way (same reason Lavoy Allen gets early run) but it's not one you'll accept, cause it's contrary to doug hates my players

The season is long, it's about more than just one game, I suppose if turners minutes were down for the season you might have a point, but his minutes (and his involvement) are up very much overall versus the same amount of games last year, and if he truly 'hated him' that wouldn't be the case.

Look at the big picture some time...

Games like like this really make me think Collins doesn't like Turner. Not to mention keeping Meeks in the starting lineup over him.

Carmelo 10/30 shooting stoudmire one shot in two ot Carmelo trying to shoot over three defenders to win the game Lmaooo dude is so over rated its sickening

I'm not sure if they do this for every game, but the ESPN 'Heat Index' writer gave out grades for certain players after last nights game and a grade for the sixers overall

(They got a B-)

Philly fans should be thrilled with their team. Young, fast, and talented, the Sixers never gave up, even without Spencer Hawes, who has led them this season. The game completely changed when rookie Nikola Vucevic left in the third quarter with a knee injury and the Sixers lost their post presence. If the Sixers can stay healthy, they will definitely challenge the Orlando Magic for the East's No. 3 seed.

BTW

Who else said 'wtf is lavoy allen doing on the floor already' last night?

I thought that as well, 9 minutes left and coach empties the bench? We cut it to -11 and had the possession to go -9 with 4 minutes to play, that's an open game in this league IMO, but whatever...

BTW funny how only one guy mentioned Iguodala invisible game, does stating that he sucked qualify me as a hater ?? it was a "big" game and I was expecting a lot more from him (not that I was suprised, though).

Brand poor production under the boards was another key

We have to take at least 3 of the next 4 home games

(can't wait to meet those C's and run them out of the gym, as Brian would say...)

the thing that baffled me the most about this game - which has been touched upon in this thread - is, why was turner guarding lebron for what appeared to be most of his minutes? and iguodala was guarding...whom exactly? mike miller? why? not to say that ET didn't do a good job on the guy for the most part, but i think it's generally accepted that iguodala is our best wing defender, and lebron is the best wing. it made zero sense to see iguodala standing next to battier on the weak side.

Iggy said he was pretty tired Friday after chasing Joe Johnson, and Turner is the only other guy capable of keeping up with LeBron (though no one really can), so maybe that's it.

Anyone else worried about Andre's knee? He started wearing the brace a couple of games ago and I fear this schedule is slowly bringing the bad knee back.

Not really. Probably just precautionary measure. I'd prefer him to be cautious and wear it.

celtics vs wizards on NBATV for those waiting for the football games to start

Man if the celtics lose this it'll be meltdown time ?

yea, and rondo is out for the celtics

Batch first touch first bad shot

Not seeing it anywhere in Brian's rotations up there, but would a big lineup of V8, Brand, Thad, Iggy and Turner have been able to at least somewhat salvage that game last night? Seems like those five were the best players on the team for most of that game...but instead we got waaaaaay too much of Meeks, Lou, and awful Jrue...

About the Turner guarding LeBron thing, it's not like Iguodala did a much better job to be honest. And if you remember last years playoffs, turner did a very good job on Lebron for the most part. As good as you can do against him. Maybe that's the reason why he was on him.

Jrue and Andre were clearly bothered by their match-ups as evidenced by their lack of confidence in their shots. Too many pump fakes from the three point line from the both of them and some would have been good looks with their feet set. Maybe DC wanted them driving inside, but a couple of those going down would have been great for momentum early on.

Bosh was totally in rhythm last night and I think DC wisely let him take those open shots. A lot of people are upset at how open they were but the harder you contest a low percentage shot, the more likely you are to make it a higher percentage scoring opportunity. He made Bosh and LeBron beat them from the outside (initially) and that was a wise game plan even though they were successful. That all fell apart when Vucevic went down as they seemingly lived inside after that and the game was then definitely lost. I think that's what DC saw, that his house had collapsed, or fence or whatever, and then we saw LaVoy. Actually, anytime we see LaVoy we may as well take it as a sign that the competitive portion of the game is essentially over.

Turner, although he mysteriously wasn't in for most of the 3rd, is definitely getting a lot more rope from DC within the offense. Despite stoned81/spiller27's assertions to the contrary, I think he very much likes Turner. He's monumentally better than he was at this point last year and Rod Thorn said they were banking on his slow development. This isn't a win-it-all season but that doesn't mean throw him into the fire. He seems easily burned when he makes a mistake and it's followed by a tremendous drop in confidence. He's on track for a breakout season next year in my opinion, and I think Collins is going to be a big part of that. Also, I still think management figures him as the key to their future success (post presence notwithstanding).

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Da Jruth reply to Cin on Jan 22 at 15:16
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"I think that's what DC saw, that his house had collapsed, or fence or whatever, and then we saw LaVoy."

Seeing Allen was like unexpected close-range fire from the bunker. Yeah, we're probably f'd.

Amusing line you wrote there.

im not ready to see tony battie guarding javale mcgee

@preston76 #Sixers update: Spencer Hawes is listed as a game time decision, while Nik Vucevic is listed as doubtful with a left knee quad strain.

A fairly accurate evaluation of the Sixers by David Thorpe:


http://tinyurl.com/7tnwamp

Subscription based

Or you can just google it :)

http://bbs.hoopchina.com/3169059.html

I don't have ESPN insider either.

Collins clearly didn't want to play Tony Battie. He simply can't play 2 nights in a row. That's why he didn't play until he was forced to when Vucevic went down.

And you could tell Battie wasn't the same guy. He alone led to Miami's big spurt in the 4th quarter by not being able to rotate on pick and rolls.

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khouse reply to Dwight on Jan 22 at 14:47
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From what I've read...according to Collins, Battie was signed for his veteran leadership which, apparently doesn't mean they need to play lol! I mean, why didn't they just offer him a job like Moses had with the team when he was working with Dalembert? But no...rather than (like successful teams)signing a younger, more viable big...we opt to sign Battie instead...hilarious!

My god the Celtics my not make the playoffs this season. Ray Allen just went down with an injury.

That Wizards Celtics game is just painful to watch.

Thorpe article:

In the NBA, a team should never have to apologize for a win or multiple wins.

Indeed, whether it's because of good fortune, bad luck, injuries, suspensions, strange calls or stranger bounces (the Boston Celtics won a title on one of the strangest bounces off a rim), it's all part of the game.

So when a team such as the Philadelphia 76ers surges through the first few weeks of the season winning games the toughest of ways -- blowing out opponents on the road -- it's certainly done its job and doesn't deserve conditional respect or an asterisk next to its name while sitting in first place in the Atlantic Division standings.

However, when the 76ers sit atop John Hollinger's power rankings, it definitely begs the question: Are they in the same class as the Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat?


Their 10-4 record suggests yes, while their personnel suggests no. To be sure, Philadelphia is a well-balanced team, ranking among the league's top three in both offensive and defensive efficiency. It is no surprise that the 76ers are defending well considering they employ a top-three wing defender in Andre Iguodala, a strong and smart power forward in Elton Brand, a highly motivated center in Spencer Hawes and a host of agile, strong and explosive athletes at every other position. They play to their strengths; their coach stresses defense and they play it with energy and purpose most of the time.

The bottom line here is that, based on who they've beaten, the 76ers still cannot yet be considered "elite" or on the same level as Chicago or Miami. However, the 76ers are for real -- a solid team that has a decent chance of making the playoffs. Here are a few reasons:

Developing young players
Lou Williams, Iguodala, Thaddeus Young and Evan Turner are all playing better than they did last season. Jrue Holiday has shown signs he can be an upper-level point guard (although he still has a ways to grow). Brand is contributing again, showing so far that his performance last season was not a fluke. Jodie Meeks is now a proven, legitimate 3-point threat. Nikola Vucevic is a top-10 rookie and perhaps the biggest surprise of the 2011 draft class thus far.

Of this aforementioned group, only Brand is considered a player on the downside of his career. Even if none of the younger players get much better, they can still be a factor in the East, but Holiday, Turner, Vucevic, Young and Hawes can all be expected to get better, as they possess skill and basketball IQ and lack only experience.

If these youngsters mature rapidly, it would improve the 76ers' depth, which would make them a much tougher out in a seven-game series against either Miami or Chicago.

Strength of schedule
Philadelphia has yet to play a team with a top-10 offense, and in fact the 76ers have played just four teams in the top 16 in offensive efficiency: Portland, Utah, Golden State and Phoenix. So it's understandable why questions remain about the 76ers' defense being considered elite.

However, the schedule continues to be a benefit for Philadelphia. The road looks smooth through February in that the 76ers play only two "tough" road games, at Miami and Orlando.

Assets to trade
One benefit of having the type of depth that the Sixers possess is that they maintain the option of shipping three or four of those quality players in return for a top-20 player. Having a lot of young assets gives it a lot of options, which is why it wouldn't be a surprise to see Philadelphia get involved in discussions at the March 15 trade deadline.

Even without a move, the Sixers are built to be in the mix near the top of the Eastern Conference, from now through April. They're not in the Bulls-Heat realm yet, but the talent and growth potential is in place in Philadelphia for this team to be a force in the East this season and going forward.

Is ther anyone on this blog who is ready to admit they were wrong about the Sixers drafting Vucevic? The kid can play.

He's definitely much better than I thought he'd be. Even if he just stays at this level, it was a good pick.

I really wasn't expecting him to be productive so early but I loved the pic. He seems like he knows how to use his size to compensate for his lateral movement. Whenever he figures out how to stop swiping t the ball he will reduce he personal fouls.

After 10 games, no, any more than I was ready to write off Evan Turner last year after 10 games (some people were ready to write him off when he was drafted) or I'm ready to give Spencer a 5 year deal after 10 games.

Small Sample size is small sample size

I agrre. Still aren't you a little surprized how he has performed when he has been given a chance?

Yes, I've said so, when I see him play - I believe I said something regarding what's the difference between him and Spencer, I see none (but he seems to be more fluid in his movements) that can't be dismissed by just being a rookie.

If he's as good as spencer - that's great - but it also shows how easy it is to replace a spncer :)

He definitely surpassed my expectations even though i was willing to wait and see how good he is.

It's still very early he has only played 200 minutes in the NBA, but i am very encouraged. The one thing that stands out is his label as a soft big at draft time but he does not look soft to me. He is a below average athlete but has legit size and does not look like he shies away from contact. Despite being thought of as a poor mans Hawes that simple difference makes him better long term.

Right on my fellow Vucevic-believer.

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Johnnylaptop on Jan 22 at 15:18
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Lou William and Jodie Meeks our defensive liabilities, Jodie can hustle all he wants but he lacks the size to gaurd above average players. They should not be on the court at the same time. Turner can play anywhere anytime,he fits good with this team. I would like to see Lou traded by the dead line, it makes sense, on so many levels. Brian and associates, any suggestion on who we should target for a trade ?

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Dwight reply to Johnnylaptop on Jan 22 at 16:57
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Lou is a team captain and has been as much part of the success so far on this team as anyone else.

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Da Jruth on Jan 22 at 15:24
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Recollect that small sample size when talking about the new ownership, when plateauing Jrue's career arc off a bad outing, when dismissing Vucevic before ever playing a game, when dwelling on the mythical slow starts, when thinking teams should be getting killed in first quarters. Small sample size.

The slow starts are pretty much a fact. How many games have the been ahead after the first quarter this season?

9 of 16 they've been in the lead.

I stand corrected. Even I can be wrong once in a while.

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ojr107 reply to KellyDad on Jan 22 at 16:39
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The better question is how many times have they had the lead before thier first subsitution.

That's answerable too if you look at the game write ups

After their first sub they've had the lead 4 times, been tied 1 time, been trailing 11 times. Six of those times they were trailing, it was 2 points or less, but they were still trailing.

do me a quick favor - run the 3rd quarter - not for tailing leading - but how many times the startling line up 'wins' the start of the 3rd quarter

that's the thing that really aggravated me when i looked at it the first time :)

9 wins
2 ties
5 losses

Their cumulative +/- is +75 in 90 minutes.

And that's what gets to me - not the slow starts by the starters, but the turn around the majority of the time - just makes me feel that they're under prepared - often

Could be a byproduct of the condensed season. Not a lot of time to scout the next team, so game plans need to be created/adjusted at the half w/ first-hand data fresh in the mind. Who knows.

Could also just be a byproduct of this team's makeup. They have to sort of ride the hot hand, never know who that's going to be coming into the game, sometimes you don't get a chance to figure it out during that first run. When you come out for the third you know, plus the mismatches are more apparent.

Except that they often seem to go away from the 'hot hand' in the second half (ala evan turner last night) or even just after the first sub/return to the game of the hot hand - drives me batty.

Advanced scouts should still be doing their jobs - I don't buy the condensed season as a reason, honestly I don't, there's enough footage and film by now of every team that the adjustments should be made before the game starts :) That's why you have advanced scouts and so many darn coaches right ?:)

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ojr107 reply to GoSixers on Jan 22 at 17:37
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The starters playing better in the 2nd quarter could have to do with better conditioning or our starters being fresher because we use our bench more than other teams.

Seems like when the hot hand is Turner he doesn't stick with him. If it's Lou or Meeks they get long minutes and lots of shots.

Again, that feels like your perception to me, though since lou doesn't start, I'm not sure how it's relevant (turner oesn't start either) - the one that bothers me is when elton brand has a really hot start - mismatches - and then th esixers forget them the rest of the game

I think it comes from it seems that Lou gets to handle the ball wat too much and initiate his offence regardless of who is on the floor with him. The ball rotation stops when Lou in on the floor. He is a gunner and Collins is ok with that. Turner is a gunner. Collins isn't ok with that.

I agree on Brand. The worst was last year when Brand scored over 20 in the first quarter against the Knicks, then Collins stopped feeding him. Drove me crazy.

Could be a byproduct of Meeks giving them next to nothing at the start of games too. That's my belief.

But he gives them so much more in the third?

He really does. Every third quarter, on a wednesday during a full moon he is a killer. Rest of the games I don't see him making a real difference.

Yeah I've noticed this. It seems like in Meeks' good games, he's only good in the third quarter. Three-point specialists only have an impact on the game when they are set up for threes (they can't create their own shots). The Sixers don't set Meeks up in the first quarter.

This is why on every team except the Sixers, three-point specialists come off the bench. Need a bunch of quick points? Bring in your 3-point specialist and set him up and see if he's hot. This is all they are good for, because they give you nothing on the defensive end and don't know how/aren't responsible for setting anyone else up.

Except when it's the fourth quarter of course - cause he does that too

He has only shown up against lesser teams in those quarters. Where was he last night or against denver and Portland?

Spiller makes a real good point. This team is a rare team that has it's 3 point specialist as a starter.

Um - where was anyone last night int he second half - the sixers were run out of the building

So where was he in the other loses when the team needed his shooting to spark a run?

Yes, that's what so far means actually

john wall played 42 mintues today

good point about Doug going to Lou over Turner when Turner was obviously in better rhythm than Lou. My best guess is Doug overlooked the little, err, HUGE, things Evan does besides score from midrange. Perhaps a better question to ask is why Young was absent from the lineup for long stretches.

Whatever, the decision to bring in Lou was not the gamechanger as you rightly point out. Miami was bananas in the first half - something even they would admit was unsustainable. Why we didn't stick to the plan is beyond me. Clearly if you scout Miami you know those shots they were making aren't going to keep falling. Tonight vs. Milwaukee I'm sure we'll see the true Heat.

Just a bummer overall. Miami got lucky beating us in the first half and we threw in the towel for second, In a 5 or 7-game matchup vs, Miami. I for sure see us taking more than one

This is why I roll my eyes when people talk about Collins as a defensive coach and use defense to justify giving away Speights for nothing when our starting center has injury problems. If defense were so important to Collins, why do Meeks and Lou get so much playing time? Meeks at least tries on D, he just has zero ability to defend. Lou doesn't even try. And yet Collins loves these guys.

If Collins truly cared about defense, Turner would start and play 38 minutes a game. He brings both offense and defense unlike the guards with whom is he is competing for minutes.

The true heat - the ones 6-0 since wade went down?

I'm not sure what you think the 'true' heat is - but they're a better team than the sixers, fully healthy and even minus wae with hawes available

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South Broad reply to jswigga on Jan 22 at 18:32
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"Perhaps a better question to ask is why Young was absent from the lineup for long stretches."

Thad was absent for good reason, in 22 minutes he didn't even greet a rebound; not that he was the only culprit.

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Dwight reply to jswigga on Jan 22 at 18:50
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It's about work ethic. Lou and Meeks are hard workers and tried to improve every day at practice. Speights didn't.

How do you know Speights made no effort in practice? Because Collins said so? Did he even say this? Seems like a bunch of hearsay.

Lou gives very little effort on defense in my humble opinion. So many times he gets burned by his man, nonchalantly watches him score, then suddenly he gets a burst of energy as he runs to the baseline to collect the inbounds pass.

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Dwight reply to spiller27 on Jan 22 at 20:27
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Yes, because Collins said so.

He's the one who is watching these guys in practice and games every day. He knows them better than we do.

Where did he say this? He said the opposite last year before the season. Maybe he changed his mind but I've never seen him quoted as such.

http://articles.philly.com/2010-10-04/sports/24999667_1_marreese-speights-practice-defense

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Dwight reply to spiller27 on Jan 22 at 21:31
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He made subtle clues in interviews about Speights not showing any improvement defensively.

There's a difference between "not improving defensively" and dogging it in practice. If he were truly dogging it, then fine, but I've seen no indication that he was. If he was traded for nothing because of defense, well then Lou and Meeks should've gone along with him. Either there's a double standard or Collins hated the guy. My guess is, both.

Your guess is both ridiculous and uninformed, and (yet again) different expectations ARE allowed to be had from different players

And the fact is (you'll ignore this one too I"m sure) that the knock on space regarding effort, defense, practice, getting better, etc...,existed WHEN HE WAS DRAFTED

Not to mention this was the knock on speights when he entered the league from folks at UF and folks who worked with him

I understand Lou catching alot of flack but what about the best player on the team iguodala didn't do much either our best player has to do a better job

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Da Jruth reply to Rodney on Jan 22 at 19:39
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"That the whole rancid concoction also has transformed Stoudemire into a $100 million version of Jason Collins -- wandering around, setting screens, attempting nine shots in a double-overtime game -- is a stunning lesson in the sheer breadth and power of star/agent capital in the NBA."

Ouch! True.

I don't doubt that it's possible, I'm just not holding my breath. There have been some diamond in the rough type guys found from the D-League, Lou Amundson is probably the best-case. Usually the guys found in he d-league turn out to be just gunners who get hot from three once in a while. Sure, explore it, but I seriously doubt you're going to find a guy who deserves to break into the rotation, let alone actually breaking into it (when you don't have a couple of injuries). I do think the latter is harder than the former.

This was meant to be a reply to Eddies' somewhere way up there ^^

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eddies' heady's reply to Brian on Jan 22 at 20:06
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I'm with you, not holding my breath either. It's just often bandied about that nothing better can be found than what you currently have, I'm not convinced what we have is all that fancy (with the two elements I spoke of). Sometimes all it takes is a guy just getting a chance. Sure, there are rare success stories, but there have been some nonetheless.

I have the same feelings about our bigs in those areas, but that seems to be an institutional thing at this point. These are the type of bigs they want. My guess is Rod Thorn would be looking in the D-League for a big who can shoot 18-footers rather than a guy who's going to block shots.

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eddies' heady's reply to Brian on Jan 22 at 20:15
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depressedfan position taken...

Bucks are beating the Heat in the fourth quarter. Only 3 points, though.

Yep, Bucks beat the Heat, in Miami.

Biyombo had 11 points (5/6 FG, 1/4 FT), 7 boards, 1 assist, 2 steals, 4 blocks, 1 TO, 5 PFs in 18 minutes.

The fouls and FTs are troubling, the rest is inspiring.

If we're looking for a d'leaguer to sign is Chris Daniels. The way he's been playing I'm surprised he hasn't been signed by a NBA team. He's 7 foot, shooting 55% from the floor, 45% from three and averaging almost three blocks per game. He seems like a guy who deserves a look on a 10 day contract.
http://www.nba.com/dleague/playerfile/chris_daniels/

He's going to be 28. Where has he been for the past 6 or 7 years?

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Court_visioN reply to Brian on Jan 22 at 21:02
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Chris Daniels has spent the past several years in Europe. I remembered looking him up a few years ago when we needed a big man and IIRC he's a pretty efficient offensive big man but isn't a great rebounder.

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eddies' heady's reply to Steve V on Jan 22 at 21:00
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What about that Jeff Foote guy? Where's he currently at? Isn't he a better look than this guy?

Come on, Niners. Pull this shit out.

You're not a Giants fan?

He's an eagles fan

Sure would be sweet to see Akers boom one from about 60 here...

and people say the NBA is where the same damn thing happens every year...

If the Lakers had CP3 it would be.

Pretty great game between the Pacers and Lakers. They're up one with the ball, 10 seconds left. Because Granger doesn't really have to guard anyone (besides Barnes and Artest), he's been playing some great weak-side defense, blocked 4 shots, including Bynum twice. Hibbert, who broke his nose early in the game and got hit in the face again and started leaking blood all over the floor, killed LA with his hook in the fourth and outplayed Bynum.


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