GM 42 RECAP: FOR REAL ?!?

Posted by: Jeff McMenamin
01/23/10 7:20 pm EST

One of the most frequent comments we’ve been hearing around the NBA about our Sixers this year is that they are a better team then their record. It is one thing that I don’t doubt about the team, but due to their lack of defense and killer instinct all year I had a hard time buying into this sentiment.

Last night however, the Sixers were a different team. They were a team that was seen only one other time this year in a road victory against the Portland Trailblazers. The Sixers beat the Dallas Mavericks 92-81 in a straight up rout which improved their record to (14-28) and dropped the Mavericks to (28-15).


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FO’ with the FOES: DALLAS MAVS

Posted by: Philadunkia
01/22/10 3:25 pm EST

This Friday 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 opponent, annual Western Conference title contender, the deep and talented Dallas Mavericks.

This is going to be a nearly impossible game for the 76ers to win.  The Mavs are a very good offensive team with an arsenal of weapons and as we all know the Sixers are defensively challenged, which is putting it kindly.  The Mavs are also better on defense then most casual NBA fans seem to know, which doesn’t hold well for a Sixers team that often struggles to shoot the ball accurately  The Sixers only chance in this game comes with the idea that for the Mavs this is their fourth contest in a five-game road trip and fatigue may have set in.  Going back to Sunday January 17th, the Mavs lost at Toronto, won at Boston on Monday and then won at Washington on Wednesday night, so there is an outside possibility that Dallas is road weary and the Sixers could steal one tonight.  However we see it as a remote chance at best.     

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


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GM 41 RECAP: MILLER TIME

Posted by: Philadunkia
01/21/10 12:14 pm EST

The 76ers are now 13-28 at the halfway pole of the 2009-10 season and after last night’s uninspired performance against the Portland Trailblazers, we here at Philadunkia have officially raised the white flag on this season for the Sixers. 

There will be no turn around, no winning streak that has the Sixers climbing the standings and no push for the 8th seed in the Eastern Conference Playoff race.  Nope, not this year and certainly not with this group.  They don’t have the heart or the X&O’s required for such a drastic revival. 

Last night we finally conceded that a turn around will not happen in 2009-10 because after their embarrassing loss in Minnesota on Monday, arguably the worst L of the season, the Sixers should have come out inspired, hyped, jacked up, looking for blood; then gone out and shut down Andre Miller and handled their business vs. the Blazers.  Whatever you want to call it, the Sixers didn’t have it last night and even after Blazers phenom Brandon Roy left the game with an injury, Philadunkia’s home team still couldn’t find it.  The result was a 98-90 “so many missed opportunities” loss.

The best part of it all (sarcastic overtones here), was that Andre Miller absolutely worked the Sixers last night and in the process kicked some dirt in Ed Stefanki’s face.


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FO’ with the FOES: MINN. T-WOLVES

Posted by: Philadunkia
01/18/10 1:46 pm EST

This 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 today’s MLK Day matinee opponents the Minnesota Timberwolves. 

We expect a high scoring affair this afternoon as the game will feature two of the worst defensive teams in the NBA.  Minnesota is giving up 106.75 ppg. on the season, the third highest opponent’s scoring average in the League.  The 76ers are allowing nearly 101 ppg., which ranks Philadunkia’s home team 12th in the NBA in opponents’ scoring average. 

The biggest question for us regarding today’s game is how will the Sixers attempt to defend the T-Wolves low post tandem of Al Jefferson and Kevin Love.  To start the game, Dalembert will probably draw the assignment of guarding “Big Al” and that’s most likely going to lead to early foul trouble for Sammy.  On the offensive end, as the anchor of the Sixers defense and on the glass, Sammy has been playing out of this world of late, but he has yet to kick his habit of committing stupid fouls.  So we would imagine the Wolves will go right at Sammy and hope to send him to the bench early.        

We also predict that Sixers starting power forward Thaddeus Young will have trouble with Kevin Love (6-10; 265) down low. Obviously Brand will get a chance at guarding Love as well which is a better defensive match-up for the Sixers on the blocks, but could provide another challenge for the Sixers.  Love is the best 3-point shooter on the Wolves (39%) and covering big-guys on the move and on the perimeter is not a defensive strength for Brand.  Hopefully Brand can slow Love down some while keeping his own rhythm on offense.  Speights won’t be able to guard either of the Wolves big men, so we wouldn’t be surprised if Jason Smith suddenly gets freed from the bench for some extended minutes this afternoon.       

Despite the challenges he 76ers face with the two big men of the T-Wolves, we like the Sixers to win the game this afternoon and dare we say easily.  The Wolves in general can not shoot, play no defense, struggle mightily from three-ville and their two premiere bigs are very slow.  So the Sixers will get a W today by playing fast and owning the defensive glass. 

For a little more insight into the Timberwolves team the Sixers face today, we turn to our man Patrick Hodgdon from howlintwolf.com to answer two questions on the Wolves from us here at Philadunkia as well as provide us with two points of analysis on the Minny squad from an insider’s perspective.


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GM 38 RECAP: ZONE + JORDAN = LOSS

Posted by: Philadunkia
01/14/10 1:39 pm EST

What do you get when two of the most offensive minded teams in the NBA get together and both teams don’t shoot well for most of the night, one of the teams plays a zone defense for ¾ of the game and the other team scores 25 fast break points? 

 The answer: You get one of the most unwatchable NBA contests in recent memory.

 Unfortunately, the Knicks and their zone defense somehow managed to outplay the Sixers (12-26) down the stretch of this ugly contest and win a game that probably had Dr. Naismith rolling over in his grave.

It’s tough to decide which had a bigger role in the 76ers loss last night — the New York Knicks zone defense or the questionable lineup decisions Sixers Head Coach Eddie Jordan made in the 4th quarter, so we’ll examine both factors.  


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GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN

Posted by: Jeff McMenamin
01/11/10 11:46 am EST

You may not like Reggie Evans, you may not hate Reggie Evans, and in terms of Philadelphia sports history he is a player who over the years will be all but forgotten, if he’s not already.  

In the five or so minutes it may take you to read this article however, I am going to take you down memory lane and by the time you’re finished reading I guarantee you that you will have some more respect for the man who suited up for the Sixers in 2007-08 and 2008-09. 

 
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GM 36 RECAP: PUPPET MASTER GETS A W

Posted by: Philadunkia
01/10/10 3:14 pm EST

To be honest with you, we only watched the 76ers game last night during commercials of the Eagles debacle, so we had to fire up the TIVO this morning to catch the full version of the W in Detroit.  As we’ve said before, we’ll take wins any way we can get ‘em at this point in the season, but it is hard to drum up any real excitement about a victory over the Pistons that extended the loosing streak of one of the worst teams in the League to 12 games.  However, one thing the TIVO revealed to us which we are very excited about, is that apparently some marching orders have been handed down to Eddie Jordan from Ed Stefanski and his superiors.


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GM 35 RECAP: A SEASON ON THE BRINK

Posted by: Jeff McMenamin
01/09/10 3:41 pm EST

In case you were wondering, yes, that is the title of a book about the 1984-85 Indiana basketball team coached by Bob Knight who made it to the NCAA national championship only to lose 65-62 to UCLA.  It is also the perfect title to describe the Sixers current situation this season.  Right now this Sixers team (10-25) is on the brink of total collapse, and it’s never been more evident then in last night’s loss at the hands of the Toronto Raptors.

Before the game even started we heard that Elton Brand was sick, and General Manager Ed Stefanski addressed the media saying that everybody was responsible for the Sixers lack of success this season.  Eddie Jordan, assistant coaches, players, and even himself. Stefanski told a group of reporters, “We’re not getting the job done and we’re going to have to get it done.”  If you read between the lines this statement basically means this, “Eddie, you have three games to show me that you can win or else you’re out.”


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FO’ with the FOES: TORONTO RAPTORS

Posted by: Philadunkia
01/08/10 10:29 am EST

This Friday 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 hotter teams in the NBA right now, the Toronto Raptors. 

We’re still pretty frustrated and angry over the ridiculous loss to the Wizards on Tuesday night, so previewing the Toronto Raptors who have won 7 of their last 8 and just beat the Spurs and Magic back-to-back may just put us on suicide watch.  You see, much like the 76ers, the Raptors struggled through the first month of the season (7-13), but unlike Philadunkia’s home team the Raptors figured things out in early December and have been playing well (11-5) since that time.  It’s just a thought, but someone from the Sixers may want to pick the brains of Jay Triano and Bryan Colangelo and learn how we can turn around this season in Philadelphia. 

If we’re honest, we unfortunately have to admit that the Sixers have little chance to win this game tonight.  Forget for a second that the Raptors are on a hot streak right now and playing some of their best ball of the year.  If you break this game down by personnel, Toronto presents some serious match-up problems for the Sixers.  With Chris Bosh and Andrea Bargnani they have bigs that are tough to handle.  Our old nemesis Hedo Turkoglu will be raining threes.  Jose Calderon and Jarrett Jack are a nice 1-2 punch at the point that will rip up Louis and Iverson’s half-hearted attempts at defense.  Additionally, rookie DeMar DeRozen is a sick athlete who can get up and down the floor with Calderon or Jack to finish on the break.  Last but not least, the Raptors bench is solid and when they’re on, they can be almost dangerous.  All of that firepower has the Raptors ranked 8th in the NBA in scoring average at 103.1 ppg.  That list of assets does not bode well for a Sixers team that can’t defend a lick, especially on the perimeter.

However, there is some hope for the Sixers.  This is a classic NBA “trap game” for Toronto and the Sixers will have to take advantage of that fact if they hope to have any chance of winning tonight.  In theory, the Raptors should be primed for a let down as they are coming off big Ws vs. San Antonio and then at Orlando on Wednesday night.  Lying ahead on Sunday for Toronto is a huge barometer game against Boston at the Air Canada Centre.  Thus the Raptors may be a little over confident and also overlooking the Sixers, figuring they can coast in this one and still pickup a victory.  For the Sixers to capitalize on the “trap game” theory they’ll have to jump on the Raptors from the opening tip by playing something that resembles defense and cause some turnovers.  They’ll also need to push the rock hard after every Toronto miss and make.  If they can get Toronto down early, then hopefully Bosh & Co. will raise the white flag and start looking to rest up for Sunday’s big contest with the Celtics. 

Of course based on the Sixers ability to hold onto leads, they will need to put Tornto in a 30-point hole in the first half for the “trap game” theory to work for Eddie Jordan’s team.     

For a little more insight into the Raptors team the Sixers face tonight, we turn to our man Zarar “Arsenalist” Siddiqi from raptorsrepublic.com to answer two questions on the Raptors from us here at Philadunkia as well as provide us with two points of insider analysis on this Toronto squad.


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GM 34 RECAP: THE FINAL NAIL…

Posted by: Philadunkia
01/06/10 12:56 am EST

In the proverbial coffin.  That’s the role tonight’s horrific loss to the struggling Washington Wizards has to own in Eddie Jordan’s Philadelphia coaching career, right? 

For us this was arguably the worst L of the year for the 76ers and Eddie Jordan’s coaching deficiencies were never more obvious then tonight.  Philadunkia’s home team blew an 18-point late third quarter lead against a Wiz squad that has struggled all year, had lost four straight and is knee deep in off-the-court drama thanks to Agent Zero’s gun carrying ways.  Tonight’s loss is totally inexcusable and it should cost Eddie Jordan his job.  Here’s why…


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