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A New Look

Obviously not the right place for this, but I have three questions about Castillo getting fired by the Eagles. 1) What took so long 2) Why isn't Mornhinweg joining him 3) Why isn' April joining him too?

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Stan reply to Brian on Oct 16 at 12:49
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1. Andy probably gives his new coaches at least 2 years before firing them. He did so with McDermmit. He probably fired Juan mid-season because his own job is on the line.

April and Mornhinweg have the benefit of a good track record.

2. Mornhinweg has been with the Eagles since 03' and took the OC job in 2006. The offense has broken a lot of their franchise records during that time. I think Andy has a good comfort level with Mornhinweg.

3. April was regarded as one of the best ST coaches in the NFL and last year his unit was decent. Their coverage units have improved since the SNF game against the Giants.

IMO someone deserves to be fired or demoted for the play calling in OT on Sunday.

The 44-yard return against Pitt doesn't count against April?

The entire special teams unit has been a joke the whole season, with the exception of henery, i guess. They can't cover, they can't punt, they can't return.

I'm not upset Castillo got canned, I don't think he was doing a good job, but when you take into account the field position the defense has had to deal with because of the the turnovers and the inept special teams, they've done an admirable job in keeping the score down. With fewer turnovers OR a special teams unit with a pulse, they're probably 5-1.

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Stan reply to Brian on Oct 16 at 13:26
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April has the benefit of a good track record. He's been regarded as one of the best ST coaches in the NFL and his units have been pretty decent since he took over for the Eagles. From Andy's point of view, he has confidence in April to improve the unit.

Andy doesn't have that same confidence with Castillo. I think the defense gave up 5-4th quarter leads last year and this year they have given up 2-4th quarter leads. If it wasn't for Tynes' pussy leg and Eli's dumb pass, they would have given up 3-4th quarter leads in 6 games.

There's something fundamentally wrong with Castillo's scheme and Andy can't afford have his career rest on Castillo's hands.

I wonder why you got Castillo's name mixed up with Rivera's :)

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Anonymous reply to Stan on Oct 16 at 13:31
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Castillo is a scapegoat and it is interesting you should mention the future of Andy Reid being in someone's hands. It is, but firing Castillo does not solve the bigger issue of the 100 million dollar man and the fact that the offense and special teams are more to blame than the defense.

To me this is Andy Reid buying time because he knows once he starts firing people on his side of the ball, it is only a matter of time before the axe falls on him.

If I ran the Eagles I would be scouting how to get a new quarterback for next season assuming that the Eagles followed their standard contract principles and can cut Michael Vick after this season.

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Stan reply to Anonymous on Oct 16 at 13:49
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Andy is trying to save his job. Firing Castillo was Andy's decision not the FO's. It's a panic move for Andy to get this team to do better. If the team has a poor season, Andy and the rest of the coaching staff is most likely gone.

I disagree with the "buying time" logic. This front office would never fire Andy mid-season. He has too good of a track record for them to do so.

Disagree with the firing. Cole/Babin were going to figure it out. Coleman got destroyed in film and wasn't leaving Nnamdi hanging out to dry anymore. Andy is panicking. First crack in the armor. If he doesn't get out of the first round, we'll be talking about Cowher and Gruden again this offseason.

I think it's funny that the only unit that isn't performing poorly is the one that sees the coordinator canned, but I'm not upset about it. They have too much talent on the defensive side of the ball to be this passive. The front four hasn't gotten any pressure at all and he refuses to blitz. I would've fired April a couple weeks ago. Probably doesn't matter. Like you said, they're probably all gone sooner rather than later.

He tried blitzing in the 4th on Sunday, after containing Calvin Johnson for 3 quarters, and got burnt. Now, players [led by Nnamdi] speaking out against the system. Dissension in the ranks...

Yeah, just read about that. Some of the special teams guys should start asking why they can't cover or return a kick.

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Anonymous reply to Brian on Oct 16 at 11:12
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I agree with you regarding Castillo's firing. Maybe it was deserved, maybe it was not, but I do not understand how this will fix the problems Michael Vick has holding on to the ball, Andy Reid has with using LeSean McCoy or how the Eagles seem unable to get into the endzone when inside the opponents five yard line. I think this is the beginning of the end of Andy Reid in Philadelphia, and hopefully Michael Vick as well.

Since Reno Mahe, Andy's ST calling card has been similar to Doug's offensive style of play: ball control.

This does not translate to the Andy's offense.

Somewhere along the road, the Eagles became one of the biggest shit-shows in all of sports. It's at the point where I can't even talk about moves logically without being reminded of five things that piss me off.

If you think about it, they're basically two plays away from being 5-1. And three plays away from being 0-6. That fourth quarter was so painful to watch.

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Rich reply to Brian on Oct 16 at 12:01
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Oh yeah, they win in Pittsburgh if they stop them on third and long and get the ball back.

And there are twenty plays yesterday that would have won the game. The worst of them all is Brandon Hughes trying to jump a 2 yard pass route on 3rd and 15, and then gave up a TD. He should be getting killed.

But as you said, dropped pick against Cleveland, the kind of phantom OPI against Baltimore, Tynes having three more yards of leg, and they are 0-6.

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Stan reply to Brian on Oct 16 at 12:54
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They could have been 11-5 last year as well. Heck, if they had just won one more game last year, they would have been in the playoffs, and the Giants wouldn't have a Super Bowl.

Hollinger has the Sixers as the #5 seed.

He basically rips the Sixers for their moves this summer, and says everything leads back to not getting that team option for Lavoy's second year. Also not a fan of Turner.

He has them at 46 wins.

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Anonymous reply to Brian on Oct 16 at 12:24
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Chicago, Miami, Atlanta, Boston ahead of the sixers?

No. Looks like Miami, Indy, Boston, Brooklyn ahead of the Sixers. Then ALT, NYK. He hasn't gotten to CHI yet.

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Anonymous reply to Brian on Oct 16 at 12:30
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Interesting. Chicago did alright without D Rose in the regular season last year and the Brooklyn love is getting tiring.

Who did Chicago lose this summer? Asik's gone, right? What about Korver? Anyone else?

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Stan reply to Brian on Oct 16 at 12:57
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They lost Watson and Brewer. I wonder if they can afford to keep both Deng and Gibson in the next two years.

Doubt they'll keep Deng. Think he's under-appreciated there much like Iguodala was here.

Looking a little more closely, he's got these teams really bunched up.

boston - 48 wins
Brooklyn - 47
Sixers - 46
Knicks - 45

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Stan reply to Brian on Oct 16 at 13:03
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There's not much to "bash" other than the Hawes signing. Lavoy's $3 million could have been avoided but he's not overpaid, Young and Wright are only here on 1-year deals, they had to take on Richardson to get Bynum, and Kwame's deal isn't that big.

Obviously the Sixers are nowhere near to being a contender, but I do think they've put themselves in a better position this off season.

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Anonymous reply to Stan on Oct 16 at 13:20
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It is not the amount that Lavoy is being paid that is routinely bashed, it is the consequences of what that meant.

Who would you rather have starting for the Philadelphia 76ers at the power forward going into this season, Spencer Hawes or Elton Brand?

That is the consequence of handling the Lavoy Allen rookie contract poorly, and the fact that it is standard operating procedure for undrafted free agents and the 76ers did not follow it just compounds the mistake. It was a simple avoidable mistake. During the season, when Spencer Hawes does something terrible at power forward, even at his age, I would prefer Elton Brand starting and Spencer Hawes backing up Andrew Bynum, or even more so, playing somewhere else

For someone like Lavoy, I can get behind giving him a one shot deal at a career. If he was waiting on the decision on his second year option, thinking he just needs to reach being worth the minimum level, I don't think he becomes a $3M backup PF/C. In the end it's really inconsequential, all of this Lavoy business. Doesn't move the needle either way.

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Anonymous reply to Cin on Oct 16 at 17:32
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And again, you are also missing the point. The point is not Lavoy Allen, the point is not how much he was paid. The point was a mistake in giving him his original contract without a team option which is standard operating procedure in the NBA, and as such that mistake led to other mistakes which led to Spencer Hawes starting power forward.

You have to look at the bigger picture and follow the dots. Lavoy Allen is inconsequential, Spencer Hawes starting power forward is a disaster

Brand, Hawes, Allen, Young, Moultrie. None of them are legit starting fours (right now) and none move the needle at that position, much less for the team.

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Stan reply to Anonymous on Oct 16 at 21:54
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It was a mistake but it doesn't kill the Sixers. The Sixers didn't have to sacrifice anyone on the roster in order to sign him. He's not going to prevent the Sixers from signing anyone or from making a trade. The Sixers can move him easily and there's no point in crying over the extra $2.5 million they had to spend on him.

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Tom Moore on Oct 16 at 13:24
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Sixers video: Evan Turner on defending opponents' top wing scorer and playing a more prominent role in 2012-13:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ziEMmlysaGQ

Brief thoughts on the game:

- The defense was better than expected. The drop off may not be that bad. I really liked the way they played with the Jrue/Turner/Wright backcourt. You have to factor in that the Celtics were a joke last night.
- The team is really deep. The bench should be a strength again.
- Wayns could really earn a regular backup PG job by the end of training camp if he keeps this up. He and N.Young complement eachother well and replace what Lou brought to the table in a good way. They can't defend either though.
- Wright is better than J-Rich and should start.
- Hawes, if used properly and in limited minutes could be useful. But only as a guy coming off the bench. The quicker 4s will kill him on the defensive end.
- It's the middle of preaseason, but the offense already looks much better than i can remember in the past 3-4 years. If Bynum adapts quickly the Sixers may finally have a top 10 offense.

I thought you had him confused for Ron Rivera, the former LB coach for the Eagles who happens to be Hispanic as well.

I don't know what's worse- being a racist or using french phrases.

Anyone else watch "Meet the Sixers" last night? I forget who (I think it was Bynum) said that the Sixers are likely to have the tallest starting lineup in the NBA. Wonder if it's true.

Hmmn. I guess if Hawes is at the four they probably will. Turner will give up inches to some guys at the three, but Jrue and Richardson are both big for the position. Probably true.

While the use of French was indeed gauche, the Rivera slip was probably just a traumatic flashback to the four consecutive WS blown saves against the Red Sox.

This was meant to be a reply to Stan's comment above.

Regarding last night's game, Did anyone else think Moultrie looked awful. He didn't seem in control of his body, slow to react to everything. Maybe I'm being too harsh.

Searcy at least seemed aware of his souroundings.

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Jesse reply to ojr107 on Oct 16 at 17:24
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I thought Moultrie looked fine for a rookie who was also coming off an injury. He had a few nice offensive rebounds, a very nice steal, and he looked pretty comfortable out there. You can see he has great length as well.

Just give him a little time.

His rebounding efforts looked very good, but his hands ver suspect. I think he can be a good player, but he is going to need some time to fin his game after missing all summer with injury.

Marc Stein ranks the chances of Holiday getting an extension as possible:

"I originally had Holiday pegged as a likely extension recipient after hearing earlier this month that the Sixers were motivated to get him locked up. He has since been downgraded to an extension maybe, at best, because of increasing rumbles that the sides are pretty far apart, with Holiday said to still be seeking a max deal that the Sixers aren't prepared to offer. Philly has plenty to think about this month anyway, truth be told, given how little they've seen from ailing new face of the franchise Andrew Bynum.".

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Tom Moore on Oct 17 at 18:13
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Sixers pregame video: Doug Collins on starting Thad Young, Lavoy Allen and Dorell Wright vs. Cavaliers:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n4CvriSwWXA

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 19:35
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Nick Young has a pretty nice handle for his size also. And, he can get a look and actually knock it down off of it. Unlike others.

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 19:35
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Wayns rains!

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 19:36
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Hawes w/ the buzzer beating triple!

.....preseason for game thread blogging too. warmup

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 19:39
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Awww, nice two man game and give and go w/ NYoung and Wayns.

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 19:45
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Heh, Hawes actually protected the rim twice. And second attempt, he stuffed Thompson I think. Jump ball.

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 19:49
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Moultrie looks more acclimated tonight.

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 20:03
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Dorell Wright has a funky/odd looking form.

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 20:04
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Poor ol' Evan Turner....

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eddies' heady's reply to eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 20:05
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..gets stuffed more than Stefanski did on ribs at Chili's

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 20:27
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Looking like Showtime out there boys!

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 20:40
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Thaddunkonus!

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 20:47
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That's twice Spencer has camped his tail out at the arc waiting for a kickout. Don't like seeing that.

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 20:57
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Wayns rains!

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 21:07
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Two things they still don't do worth a darn

Set screens
or
actually use the screen if a decent one is even set

Just terrible execution of basic fundamentals, and it's a recurring thing that never seems to get corrected.

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eddies' heady's on Oct 17 at 21:12
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Anyone know what Wayns shot from deep or from greater than 15 feet last year in college? Don't remember him having this good of a jumper.

What a travesty Kendall Marshall was drafted and this kid wasn't. I would have taken him over Marshall and I wasn't even that impressed with Wayns not just last year but most of his college career considering the acclaim he was ushered in with out of high school.

His teammates were awful. He took a million tough and deep shots off the dribble. Shot 30 percent.

Still want Ish Smith?

Starting to sound like Bynum won't be ready to start the season.

Collins: 'If Andrew can't go to start the year - and I don't know whether he can or not,
If Bynum can't play to start season, would probably start Thad Young and Lavoy.'
Tom Moore
@tmoorepburbs

Really? That's interesting. Is it Hawes and Bynum if Bynum is ready, but Thad and Lavoy if he isn't? Or is it Thad and Bynum if Bynum's ready?

Wayns looks awesome out there. He is unbelievable on the fast breaks, the way he pushes the ball. Even if he misses the layup, there's always a big man there to follow up the shot. He will certainly help relieve the loss of Lou Williams.

I like Richardson as starter now because Young is so inconsistent and can be very wild at times. However, Young has so much potential that I could foresee a change if he continues to play under control like he has in the preseason.

Wright's defense really worries me. I think his shoddy defense is why Collins has already declared the inconsistent Turner as the starter over him. Turner is so much more valuable defensively.

LaVoy Allen should be the runaway winner of the starting power forward spot. He plays better defense, rebounds better, and shoots better than Thad Young. Thad has a better inside scoring game and fastbreak game, but is such a liability on the boards.

Thus, here's how I would like to see the rotation:

Pg- Holiday
Sg- J-Rich/Nick Young (split minutes 50/50)
Sf- Turner
Pf- Allen
C- Bynum

Holiday and Bynum both play the majority of the minutes at their position.

J-Rich and Nick Young rotate evenly so they can each get enough time to on the bench to rest so they can defend better.

Turner starts and plays heavy minutes against teams with a strong offensive small forward or multiple perimeter scorers. Otherwise, Wright starts and splits the minutes with him.

Thad Young gets sixth man minutes.

Hawes and Wayns get solid role player minutes.

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eddies' heady's reply to Will on Oct 18 at 0:09
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Turner's defense is overstated. This year, if he does see most of his time at the SF spot, his defense will be part of the reason he gets cozy with the pine, along with his limited offensive contributions. His team defense has always been questionable, and guarding guys that are bigger, stronger, taller, and most importantly more athletic at that three-spot will expose him even more this year. Team defense and paint protectors will have to be the saving grace against teams with "strong offensive small forwards" without Iguodala around.

Turner isn't that adept at lateral movement and doesn't appear to be in a low enough crouch position at times.

He looks disengaged out there already, on both ends. His body language always leaves a lot to be desired, but he looks as if he's realized that he's overmatched and not of the dominate variety (as he claimed in the past), like his confidence level is slowly being sapped. Not much to go off of, but just an observation from these two preseason games.

If he didn't have the desirable will and want-to to grab a board every time a shot goes up, he wouldn't bring much of anything to this squad as currently assembled. With these added shooters and their ability to handle the ball and drive/attack the basket, I expect his place and fit on this team to continue to dwindle as the year goes on.

I think his D is legit. It probably shouldn't be, considering his physical limitations, but he's aggressive and tenacious on that end, which makes up for some of it. He's nowhere near Iguodala, he's going to get abused by guys like Melo and Pierce and LeBron, but most SFs do. I think it's at least a decently tough decision when you're looking at Wright's offense/defense vs. Turner's offense/defense in a vacuum. My big issue is how Turner will submarine the offense, and the most troubling part is that even if he isn't taking a ton of shots (and I'm not convinced he won't be taking a ton of shots), his mere presence shrinks the floor.

Ultimately, if he can somehow shake that mammoth chip on his shoulder, recognize that he's a role player, take fewer shots, completely abandon his jumper, then he can be useful. Unfortunately, I don't think he's anywhere near that level of self-awareness and his coach calling him Bagger Vance and naming him a starter w/out competition probably isn't helping matters.

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eddies' heady's reply to Brian on Oct 18 at 9:23
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Yeah, I agree he's aggressive and tenacious at times, but even that can be an achilles heel against some of these quicker, more athletic guys where you may be better served to play just slightly off of.

Heh, just saw Tom's piece on Turner being "unlocked". I guess that's sort of what I was referring to when I mentioned he looks disengaged, though Collins says it's that he needs to stop putting too much pressure on himself. He just doesn't look comfortable on the floor which appears like a lack of confidence.

Funny you mention it, I was going to comment last night during the game that I just can't understand why Collins would anoint him a starter without having made him earn it. Even accounting for defense, when you see Nick Young come in the game or Dorell Wright being on the floor, it's such a discernible difference how the dynamics of the pieces out there flow and mesh.

I agree that Collins doing what he's done isn't helping Turner's already massive ego one bit, or as you say his self-awareness. I guess since he pouted his ass off the last two years for playing behind Jodie Meeks (getting his agent to come whine for him), Collins decided to try and stroke him and his ego another way and see if he'd come "unlocked". Probably gonna create an even more disgruntled headcase if he doesn't find the success his quotes lead us to believe he thinks he's entitled to.

There may be a method to Collins' madness, but I don't agree with him handing Turner the starting job like he has, particularly because of so many new pieces, and ones that can shoot at that.

(Collins didn't shower him with that much praise to call him Bagger Vance, he actually called him Rannulph Junuh, ha)

My biggest problem with your Turner criticism is the fact that it seems personal with you, like he is a bad person. You might be 100% correct in your opinion on his basketball skills (there is absolutley nothing to prove you otherwise yet, if ever) but he is a really good kid. Always has been.

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/columns/story?columnist=oneil_dana&id=4683505

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eddies' heady's reply to MCT on Oct 19 at 9:49
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Jeebus..again? Point out one instance where I reference him being "a bad person".

Being a really good kid and having a massive ego thinking you're already a star, or the next one, are not mutually exclusive. See Andre Iguodala.

Your biggest problem is poring over my thoughts has become personal to you, you've admitted as much.

I'm curious why the Sixers haven't looked into the possibility of signing Mickael Pietrus. He's a solid defender and can rain three's just as well as Dorell Wright. I believe he can defend the small forward spot. He would definitely be a good addition.

Eh, he's nowhere near the shooter Wright is, and he can't stay on the floor. I can buy the Turner's needed for his defense argument as long as he isn't killing you w/ his offense and/or he's keeping the damage down by limiting his usage rate.

Ugh, didn't realize the Bulls let Ronnie Brewer go, also didn't realize he went to the Knicks. He's a guy the Sixers could've really used. They're light on wing defense, especially off the bench.

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eddies' heady's reply to Brian on Oct 18 at 9:27
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Never been one to follow other teams' free agent moves with a fine tooth comb. Didn't know that Brewer was with them either, just like last night I was shocked to see that CJ Miles was now on Cleveland.

The way it's looking, Damien Wilkins may be our answer for D off the bench. Scary, I know (if Dorell isn't adequate enough of course).

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Matt reply to Brian on Oct 18 at 13:07
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Fortunately, the Knicks have a history of playing guys like JR Smith over guys like Ronnie. He would've been a great role player for the Sixers though.

Anyone else impressed with Nick Young's offensive performance this preseason? He looks like a pretty pure shooter (51.1% FG, 57.2% 3FG) and is distributing better than I thought (not as much of a ball stopper as I had feared), and probably most importantly, he's going to the free throw line 4.5 times in just under 28 mpg. I know it's the preseason, and he isn't exactly facing the stiffest competition, but if he can play like this when the games count, he can be a very valuable contributor to this team. Definitely a good replacement for Lou.

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Rich reply to Jesse on Oct 18 at 13:22
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I literally have no idea what to make of the preseaon. Our second unit is playing so much faster than the opposition is, and I don't know if that will be dramatically different in the regular season or not.

As for Young, he's been really good offensively obviously, and as you said not horrible in the ball-stopping department. I just wonder what happens when those shots stop dropping and at what clip they'll stop.

Well, he definitely isn't going to stop taking them, but I do think bad Nick won't be as bad as bad Lou, because you can freeze him out when he's gunning. The entire offense doesn't have to grind to a halt, like it did when Lou was off. Overall, I think Young's personal performance won't be as good as Lou's, statistically, but I think the unit as a whole could be much better w/out Lou, because Young's performance won't necessarily define the entire unit. Yes, I like redundancy in my comments.

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Rich reply to Brian on Oct 18 at 14:57
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Interesting. He does make fairly quick moves, and I do like that in terms of as you said, not necessarily defining the offense. I have my guard up with him though, because I watched enough Wizards games in the past couple of years. Although with Jordan Crawford's recent comments, there just might be a stink that comes with playing there.

Didn't see Jordan Crawford's quotes, do you have a link or can you summarize?

“It really comes down to if I make the shot, it’s a good shot,” Crawford said. “You know, you gotta be aggressive, regardless of what people are saying, how it is. You still gotta do you.”

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Rich reply to Rich on Oct 18 at 16:04
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Sorry, that was supposed to be a reply to Brian. That's what Crawford said about his shot selection.

heh. That's hilarious.

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Tray reply to Brian on Oct 18 at 19:40
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Cousins quotes in SI:

"I didn't enjoy it," he said of the [Olympic] experience. "I went out there, and ... I'm not going to say I didn't learn anything from it, because I did. But it was just, in my mind, another political battle. I learned more about politics. I saw the work ethic of the so-called elite in the league, and I took some notes from that and took that back with me. But as far as the rest of it? No."

"Every chance [people] get, they bring it [the Westphal incident] back up, never accepting the fact that maybe it was Westphal and it wasn't DeMarcus. But hell, we're going to stick with DeMarcus, to say it was DeMarcus. I haven't had an incident since, so you tell me."

Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/writers/sam_amick/10/01/demarcus-cousins-sacramento-kings/index.html#ixzz29hHSQnRX


Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/writers/sam_amick/10/01/demarcus-cousins-sacramento-kings/index.html#ixzz29hGw1FwT

Definitely sounds like a guy with his head screwed on straight. Referring to yourself in the third person is a key indicator for psychological well being.

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Mike reply to Tray on Oct 19 at 8:47
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he's clearly still very immature, but i kind of like his honesty.

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mymanjrue reply to Mike on Oct 26 at 17:36
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I LOVE his honesty...guy is living a very strange life, probably can't tell who to trust, etc...I like DMC

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Tom Moore on Oct 18 at 21:05
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