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Toronto games always freak me out. I started watching basketball during the ECF with the Bucks in 2001. So then I watched the whole 01-02 season after that. As you may recall, Iverson was down with one of his injuries for the first five games, and of course we lost all five. Then he came back and we won 7 straight, and I figured we were just going to go right back to the Finals. Why not, you know? Harpring and Coleman had to contribute more than Tyrone Hill and Jumaine Jones - there was no reason why we shouldn't repeat. Then one Sunday afternoon we went up to Air Canada, and we got beaten badly. I still remember the game well. After that we went 1-8 and never really recovered. Lost that ridiculous series to the Celtics back when all they did was jack threes. And you know what happened in the years after that. So to me that game was kind of the turning point for the Sixers' whole decade. Certainly was the turning point of the season.

Yup, the fall was so much faster than the rise. Could be worse, though. You could've wound up a Vince Carter fan.

Cool posts, Brian. This isn't the start any of us envisioned. We've got to try to make sense of it, don't we?

Most of that +20 comes from the New York win when willie got hot during the game I think. But I still would've thought lou and will would be -15 at least! Looks can be deceiving.

Lou is still young though and his plus minus suggests he hasn't been awful. Willie is more culpable in my mind, as he's the more veteran player. Plus, he contributes to no peripheral stat columns. Look on the bright side. Willie excels at shots attempted, number of times ball movement stops and number of times I got abused mercilessly on defense by second teamers.

Here's the thing I don't get, beyond the people who read this blog and Hollinger, I don't think anyone realizes how bad Willie is. I mean, both Philadelphia beat writers have mentioned Willie and "starting" in the same sentence and didn't use the words "should never, ever, ever, ever, ever" to go along with it.

Correction, the GMs around the league realize he blows too, that's why they won't trade for him.

These Raptors announcers are hilarious, by the way. You'd think they were down 30 in the third quarter.

They did seem a tad over the top. They love Bargnani.

GREAT win.

Brian must have had a pre-game pep talk with Willie. Arguably the X-factor (along with improved team defense overall and especially rotations) tonight with the assists and a couple of key 3's.

Haven't seen the box but it appears Mo cut down on Lou's minutes considerably tonight. Looked like not as much thinking going on amongst everyone, just playing and reacting. And of course the simple cure-all, having fun on the court.

Everyone definitely looked more comfortable on the floor. Of course, making shots will do that for ya. 6/11 from three tonight.

Excellent info Brian. Basketball Value is a very informative site.

It is interesting seeing Lou and Green are a plus when either by themselves are atrocious. I'm disappointed in Lou this season. He seems to be gunning too much and forgetting the PG part of being a combo guard. I wonder how Thad is doing this season with the team's struggles. Last year he was 3rd in +/- in the entire league of the people who had enough minutes to qualify.

It was a good win tonight though. I'm glad to see Speights getting some significant minutes. I do think he can be a big help.


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