Posted by: Philadunkia
03/07/12 9:57 am EST

What do Kobe, Durant, D-Rose, Dirk, D-Wade and Chris Paul all have in common?  They’re all NBA ‘closers’ — players who make big plays towards the end of the game.  These guys have the ability to put a team on their shoulders and carry that squad to victory through sheer will and killer instinct.  Or, at least that’s how the narrative goes.  Not every player in the League owns the skills and killer instinct to be a ‘closer’ — LeBron James apparently can not fill this role.  But, most concerning for us is that despite Louis Williams’ best efforts, it seems the current Sixers roster lacks anyone with enough talent and killer instinct to ‘close’ a game. 

It has become evident that the 76ers have some major issues in the fourth quarter, which are indicative in their poor record in close games — 28 in games decided by 5 points or less & 2-12 in games decided by 7 points or less.  These issues bring some questions about the team’s future.

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Posted by: Jeff McMenamin
03/03/12 3:11 pm EST
Golden State Warriors 83 FinalRecap | Box Score 105 Philadelphia 76ers
Elton Brand, PF 33 MIN | 5-12 FG | 4-6 FT | 14 REB | 2 AST | 14 PTS | +13

This is the Elton Brand we’ve been waiting to see all year.  Brand had a strong double-double(14 points, 14 rebounds) as well as played with high intensity on the defensive end (two steals, two blocks).  He had the team fired up all game and the team responded.  It’s a good thing to see and hopefully he can keep it up.

Andre Iguodala, SF 39 MIN | 5-12 FG | 1-2 FT | 11 REB | 6 AST | 12 PTS | +14

Andre has been playing some of his best basketball of the season after the All-Star break.  Maybe he finally wants to play the leadership role for this team.  Andre had a double-double scoring 12 points and grabbing 11 rebounds while also dishing a team-high six assists.  His improved play this season is a great thing to see.  You can tell he wants to win more than ever and will do anything he can for that to happen.  He also hit a three to give fans free Big Macs and put the Sixers over the century mark late in the game (For the 1st time in 19 runs).  That’s a clutch shot in my book.

Lavoy Allen, PF 20 MIN | 5-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 10 PTS | +6

Lavoy had himself a solid game.  10 points and seven boards in 20 minutes is all the team’s asking for.  They’re the type of numbers he’d put up nightly for the Temple Owls.  Maybe he’s got March Madness on his mind?

Jodie Meeks, G 21 MIN | 3-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 7 PTS | +5

Jodie was…well Jodie.  He played little minutes as Doug Collins found other options to take his spot on the floor.  Is there a worse starter in the NBA right now?

Jrue Holiday, PG 41 MIN | 5-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 4 AST | 13 PTS | +24

Jrue played some pretty good D on shot machine Monta Ellis, holding him to 10-22 from the floor.  He also added 13 points while dishing four.  Once again this wasn’t a great performance by Holiday, but enough to get the W.  We’re all waiting for him to step up.

Lou Williams, PG 27 MIN | 9-15 FG | 4-4 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 25 PTS | +13

This game was Lou’s apology for not showing up in the 4th in the teams loss to the Thunder.  Lou hit for 25 on 9-15 shooting.  He also dished three assists, which seems to be a skill he’s been using more often.  His 25 points was a game-high, well…he was a fourth of the way to Wilt’s 100.  We’ll get to that after the jump.

Thaddeus Young, F 28 MIN | 6-13 FG | 4-4 FT | 7 REB | 2 AST | 16 PTS | +14

Thaddeus has been playing some inspired basketball lately.  Young had 16 points and seven rebounds, however he did have a tough time guarding a bigger David Lee who hit for 24 and pulled down 15 rebounds.  Since the ASB Young is averaging 17 points and eight rebounds for the now famous “Night Shift” (Although it was hilarious that ESPN announcer mark Jones did not know the Sixers bench had that nickname).  It could be time for Collins to plug him into a starting role.

Evan Turner, SG 17 MIN | 2-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 2 AST | 4 PTS | +12

When is Evan Turner going to get more PT?  In seven of the teams last 12 games, Turner has seen the court for less than 20 minutes.  During that same time-span the Sixers are 4-8.  When Turner has played 25 or more minutes this season the Sixers are 9-7.  The Sixers aren’t dramatically better with Turner on the court (Except for at rebounding.), but better nonetheless.  He would definitely put up better numbers than four points and five rebounds.

Nikola Vucevic, C 15 MIN | 2-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 4 PTS | +9

Nik wasn’t used much in this game.  Thaddeus Young and Lavoy Allen did enough to stay in the game.  Still love whenever Malik Rose does this call, unfortunately it didn’t happen in this game:

After the Jump, Six Things We Saw Last Night

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Posted by: C. Smith
03/02/12 10:48 am EST

Unless you live in a cave, you are aware that the 76ers are celebrating the 50th anniversary of Wilt’s 100-point game tonight.  Just a little FYI…The current Sixers have not scored 100 points in a game since January 23rd.  That’s 19 straight games without reaching triple digits.

Tom Moore of phillyburbs.com looks at Evan Turner’s decreased role.

Extensive story from the Atlantic about Dikembe Mutombo’s recent business troubles.  Wouldn’t you be just a little suspicious if someone offered you the chance to buy “tons” of gold in a third world country and then remove it from said country?  I would have been.

How bad have the Sixers 4th quarter struggles gotten?  Well, the respected national hoops blog The Point Forward is even concerned for the 7-6

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Posted by: Jeff McMenamin
02/29/12 8:59 am EST
Philadelphia 76ers 97 FinalRecap | Box Score 68 Detroit Pistons
Elton Brand, PF 22 MIN | 5-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 3 AST | 10 PTS | +14

Brand did a little bit of everything in this game.  Although he wasn’t necessarily a force offensively, he made an impact defensively notching three steals and three blocks.  At this point Brand doesn’t need to do all that much for the team offensively for the team to succeed, but it would be nice if he can continue this defensive intensity moving forward.

Andre Iguodala, SF 30 MIN | 5-8 FG | 0-1 FT | 5 REB | 6 AST | 12 PTS | +17

Andre Iguodala fresh off of a nice All-Star game performance showed a little bit of All-Star flare in this one.  Iguodala led the team with 4 steals, had a couple nice dishes and slams in transition, and surprisingly was able to shoot 2-3 from beyond the arc!  He hasn’t been that effective from the outside since February 1st when he went 2-3 from deep in a win against the Bulls.  This is the type of game we’d like to see from Dre every night.  If he can limit his shots to high percentage looks while also creating looks for teammates and being a lock-down defender then the Sixers are going to be very successful the rest of the season.

Lavoy Allen, PF 17 MIN | 3-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 6 PTS | +8

Lavoy got the start, but wasn’t really needed in this game. Four of his “Night Shift” teammates received more minutes than him as he spent much of the game on the bench.  I’m sure he would’ve much rather been sleeping on his couch; Andre Iguodala wouldn’t have minded either

Jodie Meeks, G 36 MIN | 4-7 FG | 2-2 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 12 PTS | +21

Solid overall performance from Meeks.  Doug Collins will do anything to keep Meeks on the floor to stave off reporters asking for his head.  So you know if Meeks logs over 30 minutes in a game, over better players like Evan Turner or Lou Williams, then Meeks had himself an above average game.  He shot efficiently going 4-7 from the field for 12 points, had a couple steals, and played great defense on the likes of Rodney Stuckey and Ben Gordon.  Meeks logged 36 minutes in this game. When Meeks plays 30 or more minutes this season, the Sixers are 8-4(with two of those losses coming in overtime). Unfortunately for him, his play is usually too streaky though to get him that kind of minutes. This is typically a good thing for the Sixers though.

Jrue Holiday, PG 25 MIN | 4-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 3 REB | 5 AST | 10 PTS | +13

Jrue, like Brand and Iguodala, also shined on the defensive end notching three steals by games end.  He also added 10 points and dished out five assists.  Not incredible numbers by Holiday, but he did enough to keep the Sixers ahead.  He applied great pressure on rookie Brandon Knight who shot only 2-8 from the field.  Followers of this team are hoping he can find his rhythm both offensively and defensively in the second half of the season. He has a tough task against Russell Westbrook and the Thunder next game.

Lou Williams, PG 25 MIN | 6-12 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 7 AST | 13 PTS | +21

Remember when the Sixers let Andre Miller walk in hopes that Lou Williams could handle point guard duties for the team? That turned out to be a complete disaster, but in this game he showed that all the training he had to do did not go to waste(maybe Eddie Jordan did do something right?). Lou notched a game-high seven assists while adding 13 points.  He’s now hit 10 or more points in 31 games this season.  The seven assists tied a season-high (which he had in the disaster of a game against the Magic).  Sometimes it’s better to make the extra pass than taking the extra shot, but people have to realize that Lou was mentored by Allen Iverson who averaged 21 career shot attempts per game.  Lou in comparison has only four games where he’s shot 17 or more this season. Hopefully this is the result of his other mentor, Andre Miller.

Thaddeus Young, F 29 MIN | 9-17 FG | 2-2 FT | 8 REB | 0 AST | 20 PTS | +23

Young set the tone for the Sixers in this game and exemplified the kind of heart and hustle the Sixers had been playing with before their five game skid by All-Star weekend. Young had 14 of his game-high 20 points in the first half.  He also added eight boards, two steals, and two blocks.  It was only Young’s fourth 20 point game this season after reaching the 20 point mark 15 times last season.  He’s the x-factor for this Sixers team, and his performance in this game is the reason why he was given a 5-year $43 million contract in the off-season.  Just please don’t embarrass yourself on a freebie again.

Evan Turner, SG 25 MIN | 3-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 7 REB | 3 AST | 8 PTS | +18

Evan Turner had an MVP type performance in the NBA’s Rising Stars Competition over All-Star weekend scoring 16, rebounding 11, and dishing out seven in a win for Team Chuck over Team Shaq.  It should’ve been enough, if Team Chuck didn’t also have Kyrie Irving who went 8-8 from beyond the arc for 34 points, while dishing nine(As Stewart Scott would say, “the dude is sick nasty”).  On Tuesday night, Turner didn’t do quite as well but still contributed in the Sixers win.  He played great defense while on the floor as well as hit for eight points, grabbed seven boards, and dished out three assists.  Turner now has 12 games this season where he’s grabbed at least seven boards, he had 15 all of last season.  His highlight of the night was a sweet full-court dish to Thaddeus Young, which can be seen here.

Nikola Vucevic, C 24 MIN | 3-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 6 PTS | +16

See Lavoy Allen. Just like his rookie counterpart, Vuc didn’t need to do much in this game and the two had nearly identical stat sheets. I’m excited for Spencer Hawes’ return for two reasons. One, because he’s an absolute factor in the success of the team this season. Two, because the battle for minutes between Lavoy and Vuc is going to be exciting to watch. These two rookies give it their all when they’re on the court and contrast each other perfectly. Imagine Big Nik trying to fit in at Temple University or Lavoy Allen sitting around a Montenegrin hookah bar. It would be high comedy at its finest.

After the Jump, Six Things We Saw Last Night

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Posted by: Philadunkia
02/27/12 11:05 am EST

If 76ers CEO  Adam Aron gave you two moves to improve this current 76ers team, what would you do?

That was the question posed to a few of the scribes here at Philadunkia. 

Would you make a trade or…trades?

Would you sign a freee agent that’s still out there?

Would you change the starting lineup? (FYI…Nocioni is not the answer.)

Would you tweak Doug’s rotations or his X&Os? 

Basically you get to play GM with this post and fix this team right now.

And if you don’t think this team needs some fixing, then you haven’t been watching closely during the recent 5 game losing streak.

Our ideas after the jump…

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Posted by: C. Smith
02/16/12 9:35 am EST
Philadelphia 76ers 87 FinalRecap | Box Score 103 Orlando Magic
Elton Brand, PF 26 MIN | 6-10 FG | 1-1 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 13 PTS | -13

Only his solid run of play to open the 3rd kept Brand from getting a terrible grade.  In the 3rd EB had a couple steals, a 3-point play, then scored 4 straight at one point and did a solid job guarding D12 for a stretch (although not as good of a job as he did on Jan. 30th).  That stretch of solid play helped the Sixers cut the lead to 5, but Brand and the Sixers could not sustain that high level of play and the Magic pulled away again.  Where has the EB of 2010-11 gone?

Andre Iguodala, SF 35 MIN | 6-14 FG | 2-3 FT | 5 REB | 4 AST | 15 PTS | -13

Dre was invisible (4 pts.) during the 1st half and the Sixers can not afford for him to disappear in big games against superior opponents (on paper).  Collins must have said the right things at half ’cause Dre cam out like gang busters and scored the 76ers first six points and 8 of their first 10.  But that was it.  He only scored 3 points the rest of the way.  At what point will Dre — the leader of this team — learn that he can not simply “play well” for a small stretch in big games if the Sixers are to grab a win.

Lavoy Allen, PF 13 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | -9

Except for his solid defense on Howard for a brief period in the 3rd Q, he was a non-factor

Jodie Meeks, G 26 MIN | 2-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 5 PTS | -13

The awful version of Capt. Streaky made the trip to Orlando.  How much more proof do we need that Meeks is not a starting NBA two-guard?

Jrue Holiday, PG 25 MIN | 1-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 5 AST | 3 PTS | -17

Arguably Jrue’s worst game of the year.  Maybe in two years.  Not only couldn’t he get it going offensively, Jrue also couldn’t come close to slowing down Jameer Nelson.

Lou Williams, PG 32 MIN | 7-13 FG | 5-6 FT | 4 REB | 7 AST | 21 PTS | 0

Louis was Louis, but his shot selection killed us a couple time in this game.  With Jrue strapped to the bench, LW’s inability to guard anyone on the Magic really came to the surface last night.  However Louis was one of the few Sixers who showed up ready to play and his 11 first half points kept the Sixers alive in this one.

Thaddeus Young, F 35 MIN | 6-13 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 12 PTS | -7

An overall solid game by Thad.  Still, except for the series in the 3rd where he blocked D12’s shot and then streaked down the court for a lay-in at the other end, it was the quietest night Thad’s had in a while.

Evan Turner, SG 26 MIN | 2-7 FG | 1-2 FT | 8 REB | 6 AST | 6 PTS | -5

Considering how deep in Doug’s doghouse ET has been of late, this was a solid outing for Turner.  Although 2-7 on FGAs is not good.  ET appeared to be looking for and avoiding D12 on every move he made to the basket.

Nikola Vucevic, C 22 MIN | 5-10 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 10 PTS | -3

Big Nik came to play last night.  In the first half he got off to a strong start by scoring 4 straight at one point and it should have been at least 6 as he was fouled on a dunk attempt and got no call.  Along with Dre’s hot start, his solid second half was the only reason the Sixers managed to keep this one respectable.  He showed some nice offensive moves overall.  He also showed the ability to adjust in-game as Vuc did a much better job of guarding D12 in the 3rd and 4th quarters and even grabbed a couple steals from Superman.

After the Jump, Six Things We Found Hard to Watch Last Night

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Posted by: Tom Sunnergren
02/08/12 10:04 pm EST
San Antonio Spurs 100 FinalRecap | Box Score 90 Philadelphia 76ers
Elton Brand, PF 29 MIN | 5-13 FG | 1-1 FT | 13 REB | 1 AST | 11 PTS | -6

After a couple nights off, a nice game by EB.  The talent has left him, but he still gets by on heart, guts, and the lingering memory of what he used to be. He’s like a walking Bruce Springsteen song.

Andre Iguodala, SF 36 MIN | 7-12 FG | 2-4 FT | 7 REB | 4 AST | 17 PTS | -7

The best player in the NBA who nobody really thinks is any good, Iguodala vigorously defended his belt tonight.  He scored 17 on 11 shots, and made Tim Duncan look really old when he blew by him for a first period finish. Not that that’s too difficult. (The “making Duncan look old” part, I mean. Dunking is really difficult.)

Nikola Vucevic, C 15 MIN | 0-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | -9

Not a great performance by the kid. He hustled, but never got in rhythm offensively (see points: 0), and made a couple poor choices—like following up a third period o-board with an ill considered kick-out that led to a turnover. Momma said there’d be days like this…

Jodie Meeks, G 24 MIN | 1-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 3 PTS | -13

Yikes. It took Jodi 24 minutes to get 5 combined points/rebounds/assists. His production looks even worse too when you consider the guys he lined up against scored approximately 75 points.

Jrue Holiday, PG 39 MIN | 6-15 FG | 1-2 FT | 4 REB | 7 AST | 15 PTS | +3

Jrue, like pretty much everybody in a Sixer uniform, got turnstiled a few times by Parker, but moved the arrow a bit in the right direction with his distribution. That said, thus far Holiday’s junior season in the NBA still grades out as a solid “Meh.”

Lou Williams, PG 29 MIN | 8-20 FG | 3-4 FT | 4 REB | 4 AST | 22 PTS | 0

The points are misleading here. He made some poor choices in the shot selection department.

Thaddeus Young, F 31 MIN | 8-11 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 4 AST | 16 PTS | +1

Thad takes ‘Philadunkia Sixer of the Game’ honors for his explosive performance. That this isn’t a real award should do nothing to diminish the energy he provided on both ends of the court.

Lavoy Allen, PF 19 MIN | 1-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 9 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | -9

He struggled from the floor, missing more than once by margins that called his sobriety into question, but acquitted himself nicely on the defensive end.

Evan Turner, SG 18 MIN | 2-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 4 PTS | -10

Not a great night for the rapidly improving Turner. Didn’t do much on offense and struggled to stay in front of Tony Parker when he was assigned the thankless task.


After the Jump, Six Things We Saw Tonight In this Frustrating Loss.

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Posted by: Jerry Scherwin
02/01/12 9:35 am EST

Was the win over the lowly Orlando Magic the most unconvincing, convincing win ever? 

As far as this season goes, it was.

It finally takes away the withstanding asterisks next to those quality blow outs.  It eliminates all complaining that Collins can’t win the close ones.  It hopefully prevents the meat heads from BEGGING for a quality opponent as a measuring stick.  And with any luck, keeps the Sixers under the radar to their upcoming opponents.

That win, to me, handled and dismantled all of that.

In all seriousness, the Sixers just choked out the Orlando Magic offense with its usual strong defensive grasp; holding on to their first place rank in points allowed per game at 86.1.  They’ve done it to the bottom feeders consistently and they just did it to an Eastern Conference playoff mainstay.  Even in this drowned out and ludicrous season forOrlando, they are still a playoff team.  Period.  And that beat down just happened.

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Posted by: Jerry Scherwin
01/27/12 1:20 pm EST

For the first time in this obscure NBA season, I’m feeling a little troubled about the Sixers.  Although I knew and was warned that this stretch of the schedule was coming like a ruthless hurricane, I boarded up my house and pretended it wouldn’t be that bad.  After all of the good feeling Sixers “propaganda” that I have been accused of pouring out in my posts, I’ve lost a little bit of my confidence after last night’s loss.

Did we really just lose to the Nets… at home?

It’s not that I’m all of a sudden turning my back on Doug Collins and his team of young and inspired talent; I’m just worried about the storm ahead.  A storm that looks really, really ugly for the Sixers young backcourt and a beat up front.

To cut to the point, the schedule for February is nothing else but exceptionally BRUTAL.

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Posted by: Jerry Scherwin
01/20/12 9:48 am EST

As Ice-T famously coined in the late 80’s, “Pimpin’ ain’t easy”.  Well, neither is winning in the NBA.  As the 7-6 faithful know full well, the road out of the depths of David Stern’s armpit and personal torture chamber to an Eastern Conference sleeper is lengthy, rotten, disturbing, inauspicious, infuriating, and any other negative adjective you can think of.

Most times teams try to buy their way out; adding a big free agent here and a mid-level free agent there.  Sometimes it’s successful, and other times it burns and fades faster thanDallas’ chances at repeating as NBA Champions. 

Even before Shaq teamed up with Kobe, championship teams were built by “buying” superstars, only to then pair them with a home grown talent; the likes of which were more times than not, threatening to leave without proper additions that would shed the teams previous losing ways. 

Today, even your regular run of the mill and early exit playoff teams are built on this very philosophy.  All of them pray that a few All-Stars mixed with the Matt Barnes’ of the world equate to the raising of a banner.

So often though, these teams spend much of their vital salary cap on guys unworthy of the status quo of being a highly touted/highly paid free agent.

Simply put, they fall victims to a thin market and their individual basketball habitat.  

When you take a look at the current NBA landscape, what do you see?

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