Comparing the '08 and '09 Sixers

In 2009 the Sixers won 41 games in the regular season and 2 in the playoffs. In 2010 they won 27 games, and went from the 14th best defense to the 24th. After the huge drop-off, it came as no surprise that the Sixers fired first-year coach Eddie Jordan less than 24 hours after the season. He was a terrible coach, and a terrible fit, but was it all his fault?

"How much better would the Sixers be with a different coach?"

It's the question that's been asked hundreds of times, by hundreds of different people this season. There's no exact answer, so let's just compare rosters.

Rebounding

  • In 2008 the Sixers had 4 above average (DRB%=.20) defensive rebounders (Dalembert, Marshall, Ratliff, Evans). 
  • In 2009 they had 1 above average defensive rebounder (Dalembert).
Advantage: 2008

Point Guards
  • In 2008 they had Andre Miller getting his teammates easy baskets (54% of assists at rim), producing efficiently (18.6 PER), putting pressure on defenses by getting to the line (4.9 per 36 minutes), and taking care of the basketball (14 TOV%). 
  • In 2009 they had Jrue Holiday playing better on-ball defense and shooting better from three, but getting less easy looks for his teammates (42% of assists at rim), playing with less efficiency (12.3 PER), getting to the line less (1.8 per 36 minutes), and turning the ball over at a much higher rate (21.9 TOV%).
Advantage: 2008

Center
  • In 2008 the Sixers had a backup center (Ratliff) who could replace Dalembert without losing a ton of defense or rebounding. 
  • In 2009 the Sixers had Jason Smith.
Advantage: 2008

Shooting
  • In 2008 the Sixers had 3 players shoot 34% or better from three.
  • In 2009 the Sixers had 8 players shoot 34% of better from three.
Advantage: 2009

  • In 2008 the Sixers had Elton Brand for 29 games.
  • In 2009 the Sixers had Elton Brand for 76 games.
Advantage: 2009

Secret Weapon
  • In 2008 the Sixers had a secret weapon who could come off the bench and almost single-handedly win games (Donyell Marshall). The Sixers were 5-2 last year when Donny Ice got 10+ minutes of playing time.
  • In 2008 the Sixers had Jodie Meeks, who might have evolved into this role if he'd played the whole season.
Advantage: 2008

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EJ was a terrible coach, but I think we had unrealistic expectations, and underestimated the importance of guys like Miller, Theo, Donny and Reggie. I didn't even get into the veteran leadership they provided, because it's one of those icky intangible situations.

What do you guys think? Was EJ really that bad? Or was it a combination of both? 


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