Monthly Archive  March 2011

 
 

GM 75 RECAP: CLUTCH WIN

Posted by: Philadunkia
03/31/11 9:58 am EST

The 76ers bench was the difference in the Wednesday night showdown against the Houston Rockets, outscoring the opposition’s reserves 43-20.  With a 108-97 victory, the Sixers swept the season series against the Rockets for the third time in the last four seasons including winning six of the last seven match-ups. 

After an impressive showing in Chicago against the conference leading Bulls, Doug Collins’ squad continued their efficient play while seizing back-to-back victories following the poor loss to Sacto on Sunday.  Defense was up to par once again, as the second-highest scoring team in the NBA was held nine points under their average (106.1 ppg).  The pair of victories puts the Sixers at 39-36 after totaling just 27 in the win column last year.  With seven games remaining, the 7-6 will look to fend off the Knicks for the sixth seed playing five of their final seven at home where they are 24-12. 


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FO’ with the FOES: HOU ROCKETS

Posted by: C. Smith
03/30/11 5:40 pm EST

This late afternoon edition of “Fo’ with the Foes” — Philadunkia’s advanced scouting series which with the help of an accomplished journalist from around the NBA beat or blog world, previews upcoming 76ers opponents — features tonight’s foes, the new look and suddenly hot (won 6 of last 7) Houston Rockets. 

The breakdown for tonight’s match-up with the Rockets is pretty simple in our eyes.  If the Sixers come out and play like they did on the road vs. the Chicago Bulls on Monday — quick and energized start, tough defense throughout and efficient on offense – they win this game.  For the Rockets tonight will be game 3 of a three game road trip and the second game in a back-to-back set.  Additionally, the Rockets have a home game looming on Friday vs. in state rival San Antonio.  In NBA speak what all of that means is Houston should mentally already be packed up and ready to head back to Texas.  So a fast start by the 7-6 tonight should suck the life out of the Rockets early and thus they should go down without a fight.

If however, the Sixers come out tonight and play like they did at home against Sacto on Sunday — lackadaisical start, ole’ defense and silly turnovers on offense — this Rockets team is athletic enough and skilled enough to do more then hang around all night.  Houston is much more talented and better coached then the Kings, so if the Sixers play like they did on Sunday, the Rockets will steal an easy win down at the WFC.   

Here’s two things to be on the look out for tonight.  The first is based on the fact that Houston sits two games back of the 8thand final playoff spot in the West.  They are a young, talented and winning team (39-35), but maybe more importantly a desperate squad for which every night is a playoff game.  That’s not a good combination for opponents and the Sixers can not even remotely consider taking this game lightly.

The second item is Kyle Lowry.  The former Cardinal Dougherty product who starred as Villanova’s point guard is on fire of late — 20 & 8 per night in March and a double-double (16 & 10) last night vs. NJN.  Lowry will be playing in front of all his friends and family as well as his former college coach Jay Wright tonight, so there’s no doubt he’ll be looking to put on a show.  He’s certainly has enough skill and right now Lowry is hot enough and confident enough that if he gets going, Lowry could carry the Rockets to a W over the Sixers.  Just to be safe, we suggest that Jrue Holiday keep him under wraps all night.      

For a little more insight into the Rockets team the Sixers face tonight, we turn to our man Eric Todd from red94.net to answer two questions on the Rockets from us here at Philadunkia as well as provide us with two points of analysis on this HOU squad from an insider’s perspective.


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PHILADUNKIA FANTASY CONTEST

Posted by: C. Smith
03/30/11 2:10 pm EST

On Monday we launched something totally new for you here at Philadunkia. 

We’ve partnered with Draft Street on a new promo for all you fantasy pros out their who need an extra fix.  

You can still sign up for the one week Philadunkia fantasy league with a $100 prize pool.

Basically, it is a salary cap league where everyone tries to assemble the best team out of the players who are still remaining.  You will have a $100,000 salary to build a team of guards, bigs, two centers and two reserves.  Each NBA player has been allocated a price based on their expected performance.  For example, Lebron costs $19,626 where as our guy Andre Iguodala only costs $13,955.  You can get the full rules here

The best part about this contest is that it’s 100% free to enter.  

But as we siad on Monday, Philadunkia nation be warned — one of us is looking to take home the $$$.

Join the Philadunkia $100 Prize Pool by clicking here.

A VOTE FOR TURNER

Posted by: Philadunkia
03/30/11 7:51 am EST

Midway through the season, approximately January 17th, forward Andres Nocioni lost his spot in the rotation.  Since then, the reserve who was brought in from Sacramento along with Spencer Hawes for Samuel Dalembert, was seldom seen on the floor. 

Now, head coach Doug Collins has peculiarly decided to bring back Nocioni into the rotation over rookie Evan Turner.   His reasoning makes sense to some, (Nocioni allegedly gives the Sixers a better chance to win NOW.) but not to me. 

With the postseason looming and potential first round competitors in Miami, Boston and Orlando, the Sixers are poised to make an attempt for an upset.  Any of those teams would present a series of highly challenging games for the Sixers and the chances of advancing out of the first round will be unfavorable.  Even if we sneak out of the first round, there is no realistic scenario where this squad is the last team standing in the NBA Finals.  So Doug Collins decision to play Nocioni over Turner should be second-guessed.

After the jump, I list and explain five reasons why I strongly dislike this move:


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GM 74 RECAP: NO LIL’ WAYNE – NO PROBLEM

Posted by: Kevin Jones
03/29/11 9:45 am EST

The 76ers (38-36) opened up the floodgates on the Bulls early on, fought off a brewing Chicago comeback and finished Monday night’s victory with a thrilling exclamation point, winning 97-85 against the number one team in the East. 

The Sixers’ defensive strategy was brilliant — forcing MVP front-runner Derrick Rose into 10 turnovers and holding the Bulls to 1-of-9 from downtown.  The Bulls had just 37 points at halftime and never once had a lead in this ball game.  Most bloggers are going to argue that this was the Sixers biggest win of the season — especially with the timing.  The win was great recovery from the now controversial debacle on Sunday vs. Sacto and avoided the Sixers first three game losing streak since November 23-26.

Thaddeus Young literally deserves a game ball postgame ceremony in his honor.  He was unstoppable in the first half going for 17 and six boards and finished with a team-high 21.  Ten-for-sixteen from the floor doesn’t even closely paint an accurate picture for how flawless he was in Chicago.  Thad was running the break, using his soft lefty floated and coming up with several loose balls which helped him account for seven rebounds (three offensive).  Plus he managed four blocks on the defensive end.   He just doesn’t get tired.  His effort seemed to inspire other players like Spencer Hawes and Andre Iguodala.  The Sixers miraculously were up 50-30 at one point late in the second quarter.


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FO’ with the FOES: CHICAGO BULLS

Posted by: C. Smith
03/28/11 3:05 pm EST

This Monday edition of “Fo’ with the Foes” — Philadunkia’s advanced scouting series which with the help of an accomplished journalist from around the NBA beat or blog world, previews upcoming 76ers opponents — features tonight’s foe, the Chicago Bulls, who are arguably the hottest team in the NBA. 

This is going to be an interesting game to watch tonight as it is match up of teams going in completely opposite directions.  On one hand, the Bulls are absolutely rolling right now and have their sights set on the #1 seed in the East.  Meanwhile, Philadunkia’s home team has struggled of late – losing 2 in a row and 3 of their last four.  To be honest the Sixers have played solidly from tip-off to final horn in only one game (W at ATL) since the big home win over Boston on March 11th

If it wasn’t for the fact that the Knicks can’t do anything correctly right now, the Sixers would be clinging to the 8 seed instead of sitting comfortably as the 6th seed.  Hopefully Collins can pull a rabbit out of his hat and help this team put together a complete game tonight, because the 7-6 will need it to down the Bull in Chi-town. 

From an X&Os standpoint, we think the Sixers are in a lot of trouble tonight.  First, the Bulls feature All-Star Derrick Rose, one of the best scoring point men in the League.  We know that starting Sixers point guard Jrue Holiday is a defensive standout, but even Holiday will have a lot of trouble containing the MVP candidate.  In the Sixers 105-99 win over Chicago back in January, Rose lit the Sixers up for 27 & 9 assists and he did it on 8 of 21 shooting from the field. 


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PHILADUNKIA FANTASY CONTEST

Posted by: C. Smith
03/28/11 10:39 am EST

We have something totally new for you here at Philadunkia today. 

We’ve partnered with Draft Street on a new promo for all you fantasy pros out their who need an extra fix.  

Today we’re tipping off a  one week Philadunkia fantasy league with a $100 prize pool.

Basically, it is a salary cap league where everyone tries to assemble the best team out of the players who are still remaining.  You will have a $100,000 salary to build a team of guards, bigs, two centers and two reserves.  Each NBA player has been allocated a price based on their expected performance.  For example, Lebron costs $19,626 where as our guy Andre Iguodala only costs $13,955.  You can get the full rules here

The best part about this contest is that it’s 100% free to enter.  

But Philadunkia nation be warned — one of us is looking to take home the $$$.

Join the Philadunkia $100 Prize Pool by clicking here.

GM 73 RECAP: WASTED MIRACLE

Posted by: Kevin Jones
03/28/11 7:35 am EST

I was doing it.  You were doing it.  And obviously the players and coaches were doing it: Looking ahead to Monday’s showdown in the United Center against the Chicago Bulls.  It’s one of those feelings you don’t want to happen but you just get bored in a siutation that isn’t as fun as what is to come.  It’s human nature. 

And luckily most hardcore sports fans today are concerned with the exhilarating March Madness tournament, so this overtime loss to the Sacramento Kings could be overlooked.  Or at least hopefully, because this was one of the worst losses of the Sixers season.

Up 96-91 against the Kings with two minutes left and one of your best players, Jrue Holiday, is having one of the best games of his career (28 points, 9 rebounds and 7 assists).  His deep three pointer just gave the Sixers (37-36) a comfortable five point lead and was three of his 16 points in the final quarter.  Somehow Doug Collins managed to keep the ball out of Holiday’s hands down the stretch, instead calling for Iguodala isolation plays.  The result was a Sixers collapse, a fluky comeback capped by a miracle three ball and ultimately an overtime downing at Wells Fargo Sunday afternoon.


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GM 72 RECAP: STAR STRUCK

Posted by: Philadunkia
03/26/11 10:26 am EST

The Sixers opened up against the Heat with arguably the best quarter and a half of the entire season.  Over that span the Sixers jumped out to a 42-26 lead with under seven minutes remaining in the first half.  Causing turnovers, attacking the paint and controlling the tempo, the 7-6 seemed destined to steal a victory and avoid being swept in the regular season series by Miami.

Instead, the Miami Heat, led by LeBron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh, closed out the second quarter with a 25-8 run.  Each point was scored by one of the big three who joined forces this off-season in one of the most highlighted franchise turnovers in the history of the NBA. 

After a scrappy first quarter when we were impressively able to force six turnovers that turned into 10 points, our defense began to slow down as the Miami beast was finally awoken.  Closing out the halves proved to be our Achilles heel in the Friday night contest. 


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ET PHONES US

Posted by: Kevin Jones
03/25/11 1:10 pm EST

John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins may be putting up some nice statistics in their rookie seasons. Congrats to them.  Guess what though?  The Wizards and Kings are light years away from making any type of noise in the postseason.

76ers rookie Evan Turner is learning how to win in the NBA right now.  He’s contributing as a member of one of the most talented backcourts — and benches for that matter — in the entire League.  He’s grown to embrace his role off the bench.  Turner’s shown his own flashes of brilliance this season too.  The 20 point, 7 rebound game against Golden State early in March was a defining moment for the combo guard.  The 23 points in Phoenix without Iguodala didn’t go unnoticed either.

The best thing I took away from my time with Turner was his recognition of how mental the game of basketball becomes at the professional level.  Mistakes must be limited.  Improvements must be made.  And progress will come.

Turner can surely become a 20-5-5 guy with multiple all-star appearances.  He didn’t burst onto the scene in high school or college for that matter.  The few of you have already written Turner off are the same individuals who after the 3-13 start wanted the 7-6 to lose games and “tank” this season.

Well this season we have all learned that adjusting your attitude, like Evan has done this season, can make all the difference.

Catch the full Evan Turner interview after the jump.

 
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