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I don't know what is going on with the team right now but Miller has to pass more and shoot less. A lot less. He isn't a scoring point, he is supposed to be a passer.

Brand isn't getting many shots, either is Iggy. They should be taking the bulk of the shots Miller is taking.

So far, Thad seems to be the only one doing well but the funny thing is once he starts to get hot they go away from him.

I couldn't believe it when I saw he took 24 shots, that's completely unacceptable.

Iggy was passive in the first half, which he shouldn't have been. Brand didn't get shots because they double or triple teamed him every time he touched the ball. He had to work extra hard to get just about all of those shots off. That's going to happen quite a bit unless the rest of the team figures out how to punish teams for doubling him.

I was kinda confused about that large stretch in the fourth quarter when, after starting to get hot, Thad (and Lou) sat on the bench. I think the lineup was Green and the rest of the starting rotation. Like what was that about? You're down 9 points, I think you'd want your hottest two players on the court.

Completely agree.

There's nothing more frustrating than watching Thad start to pick this team up and carry them, only to see him on the bench for a long stretch two minutes later. He's young, he could probably play 40 minutes/game if need be. Leave him in there until he isn't hot anymore when he gets in a groove like that.

Those three plays he made in a row were amazing. The last one he took the ball right into Dwight Howard's teeth and still finished. He's going to dig this team out of a lot of holes, if given the chance.

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Tray reply to Brian on Nov 7 at 1:17
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And at one point during that stretch the lineup, come to think of it, was Green, Ratliff, Iguodala, Miller, and Brand. So you have the three guys playing decent games on the bench, while the three playing the worst are out there for the key possessions of the game. I don't know. If Isaiah Thomas still had a job, I'd say send Iguodala to the Knicks, he'll give you back way more than he's worth. Now that he's gone, I don't know what to do. Oh, and another major concern is Miller. It's very early but it's looking like the fluke season talk may have been on the money.

He's a notorious slow starter, which seems to be an excuse for just about everyone.

I hope they use these 4 off days wisely.

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Tray reply to Brian on Nov 7 at 1:40
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Are you watching this Rockets/Blazers game? Unreal last few seconds of overtime.

Went to bed soon after the Sixers debacle.

I would have been fine with Miller taking 24 shots if 15 were from the post on that midget Jameer. How many were? Like 2? Come on. That is all this tea did last year against the Magic. Miller posted and posted and posted some more. With Brand, that should allow him more space to post. I don't get it.

Everyone knows Miller looks herrendous and Iguodala too. Willie has had me convinced for years that he shouldn't be playing in NBA games and I am more convinced with each passing game.

What about Lou though? The guy looks like absolute garbage. He has zero midrange game still. He is taking horrible off balanced shots. And his 3 looks unimproved. Thad improved so much when it came to shooting and Lou looks much the same. Still early, but I am most dissapointed in Lou right now. He seems to have digressed and is trying so hard to fill this "instant offense" role when he should be "PG off the bench then instant offense."

All in all, the team is still fine. They continue to outrebound teams and in the long run that will lead to wins.

16 more games until Brian comes out with the "Iguodola Sucks" headline!
I would normally go on here about just how bad Iguodola is...but let me point out some good things about him.
He can dunk the ball REALLY hard...and sometimes he gets his whole head above the rim. Impressive.
His one dunk in the NBA dunk contest was one of the greatest of all time (the one AI helped him with)
He has really impressive upper body muscles. This guy is sculpted...he looks like a friggin statue. If there were a hard dunking bodybuilding contest he would win it every year.

Ok thats about all the nice things I can say about Iggy. Honestly...at this stage hes not even worth a 3 million a year..let alone 13 or 14.
Andre's agent must have shown Stefanski his dunk highlight reel over and over during negotiations. Because if you just look at those hes awesome. Unfortunately thats not what matters.
Andres 16 points mean next to nothing...he gave up more than that with guys blowing by him and turning the ball over. And not one of those baskets came when they needed it.
Andre Miller...horrid also. at this point the Sixers have some really talented big men but terrible guards. These guys still cant seem to play with Brand. I dont know what else to say about this team...I know its 5 games in but they have looked terrible. One thing I do know is this....if this garbage continues you can bet Stefanski will make a move.


I agree with Joe the rebounding and the effort is still there enough to not be too alarmed. But Mo definitely hasn't figured out the rotation. It's killing them offensively and leading to turnovers.

Brian, when you mentioned Brand getting triple teamed and putting Rush and Marshall in there to make them pay, I couldn't agree more. 1000 percent. They don't have any flow on offense because they are not adjusting to what teams are doing to them defensively. Teams are zoning and double teaming and clogging driving lanes. Then when the sixers try to force drives turnovers occur. I can't remember seeing so many turnovers after they've been caught in the air. Most of the sixers players thrive by driving the ball. This is hurting iggy the most because that's his game (driving to the hoop and then hitting some jump shots when he has space).

This is Mo's responsibility. Mo is the one who needs to see this happening and respond accordingly, like instantaneously. We brought Brand in, now teams are neutralizing him. It has to stop. The first time he see's a team collapse on Brand, you look over to Marshall and Rush and tell them to get the hell up. They will hit threes enough to put a stop to this nonsense. Then it'll settle everyone else down.

The biggest takeaway from the first six games is that a lot of adjustments need to be made.

I don't think they're major adjustments, but the coaching staff and the players themselves need to be hard at work over the next four days to figure out how they're going to play w/ their new personnel, and how they're going to combat what teams are doing to them defensively.

"Loved the lineup of Miller, Rush, Iguodala, Thad and Brand. It seemed to work too."

Me too, Brian. Frankly, our current starting lineup seems to be one of the least effective lineups we put out there. One question: does Brand mind playing center? If he doesn't, then Mo should go with it. We lose Sammy's shot blocking and overall presence as an intimidator, but we gain so much more in having a genuine deadeye shooter out there.

Here's another option which some people think I'm crazy for suggesting: Start Kareem in place of Iggy. Then, when it's time to make substitutions, you sit Miller and Kareem and bring in Iggy and Lou. On offense, Iggy would function as an athletic point guard and Lou as a small shooting guard. On defense, they'd trade places, so to speak... Iggy would guard the other team's shooting guard and Lou would guard their point guard. This always works in basically keeping Willie Green out of the game.

Thoughts?

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Bart reply to Bart on Nov 7 at 12:54
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I meant to say, "This also works in basically keeping Willie Green out of the game."

Hmmn...I'd have to think about that. The problem, and possibly the advantage, of this roster is that you have so many pieces which can fit together in so many different ways. It's great because if one lineup isn't working you have so many ways to tweak it, and you have guys who specialize in different things.

Mo is going to have to be fluid with his rotations all season long, which can cause problems. If I was going to mess with he starting lineup, I'd probably go with Rush instead of Sammy, rather than sitting Iguodala.

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Bart reply to Brian on Nov 7 at 14:55
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Agreed. I really think the most glaring weakness we have right now is Iggy's inability to knock down a shot from the shooting guard position. As many people have noted, you really can't expect to win if your shooting guard can't shoot. Now, obviously, our small forward can shoot, which is great. But, Miller can't hit anything outside 15 feet and Iggy can't hit anything outside... well... he can't hit anything that isn't a jam. I just think it's silly to think you're going to win games if your starting backcourt is that weak in the shooting department.

The resolution, then, if you think Iggy deserves to start - which most people do - is to move the guy back to his small forward position. This necessitates sliding Thad down to PF and Brand down to Center. You can then start Kareem at SG and expect him to shoot the lights out most evenings. It seems to work quite nicely on paper.

Anyway, we'll just have to wait and see what happens. But things cannot continue the way they've been going. It's been awful.

Iguodala is still fine.

Who is this team doing to keep deactivated? I keep coming back to 2 names. Here is the way I see it... Lou Williams and Willie Green are playing the EXACT SAME ROLE right now which is something called "instant offense" apparently and isn't a position, but rather a constant state of shooting that has overtaken Lou.

PG: Miller, Ivey
SG: Iguodala, Rush
SF: Young, Marshall
PF: Brand, Evans
C: Dalembert, Speights
IO: Williams

That leaves one roster spot for Green and Ratliff. I think that this should change by opponent. When we face Dwight Howard, Willie Needs to be deactivated. When we play golden state or some other team that sucks at defense and runs a lot it will be Theo who is deactivated.

last night is why Donyell needs to be active. He brings something that is needed. More so than Rush, he makes open shots and he can play the 3.

Ultimately, Willie and Theo should never see time unless there is an injury or foul trouble or a blow out.

I agree, but need to see more of Ivey. I'm not sure he's good enough to be the backup point. Lou really needs to grow into that role. I don't know why he falls into these ruts where he's just a black hole of offense. Maybe they shouldn't let him talk to Willie, he's rubbing off.

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Joe reply to Brian on Nov 7 at 15:07
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Well, if Lou starts playing point guard then it opens a spot up in the designated IO spot for Willie. We all know that Willie is an "all star" at that role.

How about Ivey's D? It sucks. Rush's too. At least that is how it has looked so far in this small sample size. Ivey does hustle though and is pretty active. Rush is a sloth.

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Tray reply to Joe on Nov 7 at 14:57
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"Iguodala is still fine."

Oh no, he isn't.

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Joe reply to Tray on Nov 7 at 15:16
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Whats wrong with him? Obviously he is playing badly to a certain extent, but he will level out and be fine. Small sample sizes are overblown way too often. I mean Quintin Richardson is shooting like 55% from the floor right now... lol.

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Tray reply to Joe on Nov 7 at 17:08
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I mean, you can definitely throw out his stats, they don't mean anything at this point. But he's playing terribly. He's not defending, constantly turns over the ball, forces bad shots, looks like he hasn't improved his jump shot at all, and consistently looks like, at best, our third option. And some nights he looks more like our fourth or fifth.

Why does Iggy put so much arc on his shot?
Did you hear those rims clank?
You spend 20mill on a player, get some lube for your rims!
Lou Williams needs to play more, I repeat Lou Williams needs to play more.

I'm planning a post on Iggy's shot in the next couple of days, not the rims so much, but it's a good point.

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Joe reply to Terry on Nov 7 at 15:12
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Has Lou earned more time of something? To me, he looks the worst of all the Sixers right now. Iguodala is contributing beyond scoring at least somewhat aka trying to rebound. Lou is just a big whopping negative right now taking horrible horrible shots.

Has anyone but Thad and Speights really earned more time at this point? Rush has hit some open shots, but calling for more PT for him is more based on the other options and the fact that we need outside shooters on the floor.

Order of players hurting the team the most:

1. Willie
2. Lou
3. Andre Miller

Miller and Lou will come around. Iggy is not playing to his potential right now but he's not THAT bad. It's the guard play that is killing this team at the moment. Agree with whoever said willie needs to be inactive. Give him the marbury treatment.

Williams is a proven commodity hence 5mill per.
He’s the only one who can create his own shot off the dribble. Brand doesn’t really belong in the same company as the other 20-10 guys

Williams was given that contract based on what they expect him to be, not what he'd done up to that point. He's a young kid who showed a ton of promise, but he hasn't played like that guy at all this season.

He can create his own shot, but that doesn't mean he has to do it every friggin' time down the floor. If he's in there as the point, he needs to play the position.

As for Brand, I don't think you'll get much of an argument when comparing him to Shaq, Garnett and Duncan, but he's good. Looks to me like he's still finding his legs.

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Tray reply to Brian on Nov 7 at 17:11
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Brand looks like a decidedly second-tier talent right now. I wouldn't even mention him in the same breath as Boozer if all I had to go on was what he's done this season. And I thought Collins made a great point when he said that if you guard him with a bigger guy, he's really not such a special post player.

Good things I've seen from Brand:

1. Monster on the boards.
2. Really good touch on 15-foot jumpers (which they aren't utilizing enough)
3. Strong down low, with a lot of moves.

Bad things:

1. Doesn't get the ball out cleanly against doubles.
2. Can't (or has chosen not to) shoot over guys. I know for a fact he can do this, he uses that lean back jumper, he just hasn't been doing it.
3. Soft finishes around the hoop. Last night he got pissed late and absolutely overpowered a double team and threw it down. He needs to do more of that instead of going to the middle and shooting that fall away weak garbage.

All the bad stuff can be corrected.

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Tray reply to Brian on Nov 7 at 17:45
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Look, I saw a lot of good things from Ryan Gomes the other night. We could list good things Brand does all day, but I just feel he was oversold a little, like we were getting a top 5 power forward, or a top 20 player, and that didn't happen at all. I would happily take Garnett, Duncan, Bosh, Howard, Boozer, Bosh, Stoudemire, and even Al Jefferson over him. And I think Brand vs. Gasol is a tough question.

On another really interesting note, Hollinger reports that Sergio Rodriguez has requested a trade. I'm extremely high on the guy, his inability to crack the starting rotation when his only competition is Steve Blake notwithstanding, and think he could (a) be just what we need in the short-term as far as backing up Miller goes, and (b) make a way better long-term replacement for Miller than Williams, who just plain doesn't have point guard instincts, will. Great point guard to have in an up-tempo system, and he's currently averaging 12 assists per 40 minutes. His rookie season, he averaged 10 per 40. (Compare this to Miller, who averaged 7.5 per 40 in his career year last season.) I'm not sure what could induce Portland to part with such cheap and promising talent, the guy only makes 874K, but I would point out that, with Oden out, their only backup centers are LaFrentz and Shavlik Randolph. So maybe they'd be interested in Ratliff - I'd even consider parting with Speights, Rodriguez is that promising.

Look, I saw a lot of good things from Ryan Gomes the other night. We could list good things Brand does all day, but I just feel he was oversold a little, like we were getting a top 5 power forward, or a top 20 player, and that didn't happen at all.

Change it to hasn't happened. We're talking about 6 games.

As for Rodriguez, I wouldn't part with Speights for him and I doubt the Blazers would take Theo for him, but if something could somehow be worked out, why not.

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Tray reply to Brian on Nov 7 at 17:56
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I mean, we're not keeping Miller, nor should we. Williams is not the answer and it's hard to see him ever becoming the answer. So going into next season we'll have a huge question mark at point. Speights may ultimately make a better player than Dalembert, he already looks like a smarter one and he's nearly as athletic, but if we were to lose Speights, we'd still have an above-average center. I would do it. Rodriguez's upside is Tony Parker, if Parker were a better passer.


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