FO’ with the FOES: LA LAKERS

Posted by: Philadunkia
02/26/10 6:44 pm EST

This Friday , over-hyped blizzard 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 opponent the defending NBA Champion Los Angeles Lakers. 

Is it wrong to root against Philadunkia’s home team?  Is it even more of a basketball sin to hope that the 76ers (22-35) get their doors blown off by the Lakers tonight?  Well if it is wrong, then we don’t want to be right.  Here’s why…We have to figure that a blow out loss to the Lakers tonight would be the final nail in Eddie Jordan’s coffin.  Numerous Sixers insiders and beat writers were proclaiming this current road trip, which ends against the Lakers tonight, as some sort of last stand for Jordan.  If the Sixers did well on this trip, then Jordan holds onto his job until the end of the year.  If the Sixers soil the bed on this trip then allegedly Jordan is done.

Well, if the Sixers get pummeled tonight, then the team would end this road trip 1-3 and it would not be a pretty 1-3 either.  In Chicago the Sixers got simply embarrassed to the tune of a 32-point beat down.  Then at Golden State, the Sixers let a 24-point 2nd half lead slip away to the pathetic Warriors only to miraculously pull the game out by the skin of their teeth.  In Phoenix the next night, Jordan’s crew got worked by the Suns.  Don’t be fooled by the 106-95 final score, it was never that close in the second half.  The Suns ran out to a 22-point lead in the 3rd Q, thanks to all-world guard Steve Nash and his maestro-like skills at the helm of the Suns offense.  Nash did not see a single tick in the 4th Q and Amare played only 2:07 in fourth, yet the Sixers never got closer then 11 points.

If you combine the above evidence with a lopsided loss to the Lakers tonight, then in our opinion Jordan’s demise would finally be sealed.  Hallelujah !!  We for one have been calling for his firing since right before New Year’s.  So if we have to root against the Sixers tonight to rid ourselves of Eddie Jordan and begin to move the 76ers ever so slightly forward, then that’s what we’re going to do and we’ll do it with passion.

For a little more insight into the Lakers team the Sixers face tonight, we turn to our man Darius Soriano from forumblueandgold.com to answer two questions on LA from us here at Philadunkia as well as provide us with two points of analysis on this Lakers squad from an insider’s perspective. 


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FO’ with the FOES: PHX SUNS

Posted by: Philadunkia
02/24/10 7:13 pm EST

This snow anticipating, Wednesday 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 opponent, the fun to watch Phoenix Suns.

After last night’s roller coaster win over the horrific Golden State Warriors, we have two angles on tonight’s game against PHX (35-23), one of the hottest teams in the League and the Western Conference’s current 5th seed for the NBA Playoffs.  Here’s our breakdown for tonight…

1)      If the Sixers hit the court tonight and play the way they did on both ends of the floor in the first half against GSW on Tuesday night, the Sixers can pull off an upset of PHX.  That means on offense the Sixers must go into the post, specifically to Elton Brand and look to capitalize on either easy interior buckets or when the ball comes back out wide open looks for their guards.  Eddie Jordan’s team must be smart with their up-tempo game and run-n-gun only when they have clear opportunities.  Additionally,  the Sixers will have to play tight D and rebound well as they did in the 1st half vs. GSW.

2)      If tonight the Sixers play — on both ends — the way they did during the late 3rd and all of the 4thquarter against GSW on Tuesday night, the Suns will run them off the floor.  The Sixers can not settle for long jumpers and 3PAs tonight.  They simply don’t make enough of them to rely on those types of shots to sustain their offense, plus the Suns will use those rebounds to feed their lethal fast break offense.  They also can not display the ole’ defense that reared its ugly head again during the 4th Q vs. GSW.  The 76ers survived their second half collapse Tuesday night because the Warriors are awful on defense and they had an off night shooting.  Thus GSW could not capitalize on the Sixers poor play in the late stages of the second half.  Make no mistake, the Suns are significantly better then the GSW on offense and despite their reputation, PHX actually plays solid defense.  They will take advantage of long stretches of poor play by the Sixers tonight and bury Philadunkia’s home team.     

For a little more insight into the Suns team the Sixers face tonight, we turn to our man Michael Schwartz from valleyofthesuns.com to answer two questions on PHX from us here at Philadunkia as well as provide us with two points of analysis on this Suns squad from an insider’s perspective.   


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GRADING THE TRADE

Posted by: Philadunkia
02/19/10 2:51 pm EST

Believe it or not there were some “NBA experts” on the web who actually took the time to evaluate the last minute, small-time deal the 76ers and the Bucks put together featuring bench warmers Royal Ivey and Primo Brezec of the Sixers as well as a second round pick in exchange for Jodie Meeks and Francisco Elson of Milwaukee.

To be honest the deal means nothing to us.  Ed Stefanski is basically hoping that after 41 games in the NBA, Meeks a guy he loved at the 2009 NBA Draft, is better prepared to contribute in the League during 2010-11 then anyone he could select in the early second round of this June’s NBA Draft.  However, we’re trying to figure out how the Sixers are going to evaluate Meeks and what exactly he may be able to contribute to the team next season with the very limited minutes he will see in the remainder of 2010.  With the stack of guards and guard-forwards currently on the roster of Philadunkia’s home team (Holiday, Iverson, Green, Williams, Kapono & Carney), we don’t see Meeks getting much tick.  Additionally, Edddie Jordan has proven through his ridiculous treatment of Jrue Holiday, that he does not like to play rookies.  Basically the deal could be a huge waste of time of Meeks doesn’t get some shots up in a Sixers uniform soon.

After the jump we present what the experts had to say bout the Sixers acquisition of shooting guard Jodie Meeks from Milwaukee. 


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NOTES, LINKS & TWEETS

Posted by: Philadunkia
02/08/10 1:42 pm EST

CSNPhilly.com says that Allen Iverson and Louis Williams were excused from practice this morning. 

By posting a Twit-pic on his Twitter account, Louis provides evidence that he has the flu.

But Kate Fagan of the Inqy Tweets that Iverson was back at practice today.

The Phoenix Suns had scouts at the 76ers – Hornets game on Friday night to watch AI9.

Yahoo’s Kelly Dwyer author of their basketball blog “Ball Don’t Lie” comments on the AI9 for Amare trade.  Among Dwyer’s wise words, “The Suns, apparently, are willing to break the bank for this guy.”

According to the Dallas Morning News, a trade with Dallas involving Iggy, Elton Brand or Sammy Dalembert seems unlikely as it would “clog” the Mavs payroll for years.  


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FO’ WITH THE FOES: CHICAGO BULLS

Posted by: Philadunkia
02/03/10 3:10 pm EST

This Wednesday 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 opponent one of the hottest teams in the NBA, the Chicago Bulls.   

This is going to be an interesting game to watch tonight as it’s a match up of teams going in completely opposite directions.  On one hand, the Bulls are absolutely rolling right now (more on that later) and head coach Vinny Del Negro has had a large part in getting this team turned around after a horrible start to 2009-10.  Mean while, Philadunkia’s home team started off shaky and has steadily regressed to the point where they absolutely stunk up the joint in three of their last four games.  Additionally from the body language and facial expressions we have seen the players displaying lately, head coach Eddie Jordan has lost this squad.    

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.  Since we know that starting Sixers point guard JrueHoliday (a defensive standout) will only see about fifteen minutes of action thanks to Jordan’s unexplainable lineup rotations, Rose will spend most of the night blowing by Louis Williams or Willie Green.  The Bulls also shoot the 3-ball decently (35.2% — 14thin the NBA) so that won’t help the Sixers perimeter defensive woes either.  Chicago is no slouch on the interior as well.  Loul Deng, Joakim Noah, Taj Gibson and Brad Miller can all score and hit the glass.  Finally, the Bulls are young, athletic and can push the rock for easy fast break buckets.            

The Bulls have also turned it up a notch at the other end of the floor and become a very, very solid defensive club.  They’re second in the NBA in opponent’s FG percentage (43.6%) and rank among the Top 10 in the NBA in a host of other defensive stats (More on that later).  That’s not good news for a Sixers team that has frequently struggled to put the ball in the bucket this season and it’s especially bad news for a Sixers team that tonight will be missing one of its more consistent scoring threats in Allen Iverson.   One of Iverson’s children is ill and the Sixers have given Allen permission to skip the game in order to be with his family.    

Honestly after their uninspiring performance against the Nets on Sunday night, we’re hard pressed to find a way the Sixers can win this game.  Their only chance comes with the idea that the Bulls could be exhausted.  Chicago wrapped up a 7-game road trip on Friday night, played at home last night and then flew from Chicago to Philadelphia for tonight’s game.  The Sixers have been off for two days and except for a bus ride to the Meadowlands on Sunday, they have been home since January 28th.  So there is a slight chance that a rested Philly squad could use its fresh legs to steal a W from the weary Bulls tonight.    

For a little more insight into the Bulls team the Sixers face tonight, we turn to our man Matt McHale from bullsbythehorns.com to answer two questions on DAAA Bulls from us here at Philadunkia as well as provide us with two points of analysis on this Chicago squad from an insider’s perspective.    

GM 47 RECAP: TCB — BARELY

Posted by: Philadunkia
02/01/10 11:18 am EST

We’re not going to waste much time with recapping the 76ers (16-31) escape from the Izod Center with a win over the awful Nets who by the way were missing their best player, Devin Harris.  This was arguably the worst NBA game we have witnessed all season and hopefully those of you with children did not let them watch this debacle last night. 

Yes the Sixers got a win and we guess that’s what really counts (Or is it?), but their supposed to beat the Lebron James courting Nets and they should have taken care of business in a more dominating manner.

It’s unbelievable to us that the Sixers team which was so brutal last night in NJ was the same team that played a very solid game Friday night and took Kobe and the defending World Champion LA Lakers to the wire before losing at the end because the Lakers simply had better talent.  How does such a discrepancy happen from Friday to Sunday night?  It happens when a coach has lost a team, which from the body language and facial expressions on the the Sixers players is what has happened to this squad.

This is all you need to know about last night’s W over hopeless NJ…


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MILLER HITS FOR 52

Posted by: Philadunkia
01/31/10 12:10 pm EST

Philadunkia nation, that’s not a misprint.  Former 76ers point man Andre Miller lit up the Dallas Mavericks for 52 points last night and led the Portland Trailblazers to a 114-112 win in Dallas.  Miller who missed his first shot of the night was 22 of 31 from the floor and 7 out of 8 from the charity stripe.  Nearly half (25 points) of Miller’s scoring out-burst came during the fourth quarter and overtime periods.  ‘Dre scored the Blazers last nine points in regulation including the game tying bucket, a floating hook shot, with 14 ticks left.

As we all remember, 76ers GM Ed Stefanski decided against resigning Miller in July 2009 and cited the fact that he didn’t want to commit the years and money Miller was looking for on a soon to be 33-year old point guard.  Stefanski also noted that the organization felt it was time to give Sixer combo-guard Louis Williams a chance to start for the team at the point.  The Blazers gave Miller a 3-year, $21 million deal in which the first two years are guaranteed.  For Portland that was money well spent as Miller is averaging 13 points and 5 dimes a night and has been key in directing a team filled with young talent. 


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GM 46: SNAKE BITTEN

Posted by: Philadunkia
01/30/10 12:52 pm EST

We have to give the 76ers (15-31) credit, for the most part, they played decently and hung tough last night against the defending World Champions and that was something we did not expect.  In fact we dare to say that if the Sixers could have taken better care of the rock (20 turnovers) and gotten a few more stops on the defensive end down the stretch, that they could have pulled off a major upset in front of the packed house down at the Wachovia Center.

But the reality is that the Sixers could not get those key stops especially against Kobe in the 3rd quarter and that was enough to lead the seemingly disinterested Lakers to a 99-91 W last night.  Kobe who only had two points after two quarters of play was simply amazing to watch after halftime.  “The Black Mamba” went bananas in the 3rd quarter (14 points), scored 22 total in the second half and threw in some lock-down defense as well to secure the victory for LA.


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NOTES, LINKS and TWEETS

Posted by: Philadunkia
01/29/10 11:03 am EST

Obviously there are numerous trade rumors floating around the NBA involving just about everyone on the Sixers roster.  That’s how it goes in the NBA when you are a seriously underachieving team.  Now Ed Stefanski has publicly stated there are, “no untouchables” on the Sixers roster.

Dei Lynam at csnphilly.com writes that so many changes — trades, coaching move, a new GM — could hapeen with the Sixers in the next couple of weeks, that it’s hard to see what the future holds for the 76ers.

Kate Fagan of the Inqy, the only mainstream writer who has been critical of Eddie Jordan and the 76ers this season notes that based on the body actions and facial expressions she observed in the latest Sixers loss, that the team mentally “checked out” during the Milwaukee game.


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GM 45 RECAP: UGGGGHHHH

Posted by: Philadunkia
01/28/10 3:45 pm EST

When you look at the list of issues the 76ers (15-30) had to overcome last night to have a chance at tying their game vs. Milwaukee with :08 left on the clock, you’ll realize it’s a stinking miracle they were able to stay in the game that long. 

Despite a very sloppy 1st quarter, questionable personnel decisions by Eddie Jordan, a poor shooting night by Andre Iguodala (4-11; 1-5 on 3PA) and Allen Iverson (3-10), Jrue Holiday’s first bad night in forever, 18 turnovers and horrid three point shooting (2-14 for 14.3%); the Sixers somehow managed to keep this game close and had a chance to tie or win on their final possession.  That’s when the final knockout blow was delivered to the Sixers hopes of winning this game and it came in the form of an Elton Brand missed bunny.  


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