Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports
The Philadelphia 76ers and the Washington Wizards (nee Bullets) are going to play a professional basketball game tonight. You've got questions, we've got answers. And when you didn't have questions, we made them up.
More than halfway through the season, have the Sixers finally settled on a starting lineup?
It appears that way. The Holiday-Swaggy-Turner-Thad-Hawes lineup is rather pedestrian offensively (99.8 Offensive Rating per NBA.com) and bad defensively (106.2 Defensive Rating), but it has helped the Sixers get out to double-digit first quarter leads in each of the past two games. And as we've seen quite often this season, when the 76ers end the first quarter with a lead, they usually win. Except when they don't.
Here's Coach Collins talking about the new starting lineup before making a golf reference that was completely lost on me.
So Royal Ivey and Damien Wilkins are really the first two guys off of the bench?
Pretty much. This is the hand that we have been dealt. Whatever "left knee synovitis" is, Jason Richardson needs to get over it ASAP.
Donde esta Dorell Wright?
I wish I knew. He owes me $30.
Don't the Wizards suck?
Yeah, but not as much as they did at the start of the season. Let's not forget that this was a team that started out the year 0-12. Washington has actually won seven of their last 11, and that stretch includes victories over Oklahoma City, Denver, Atlanta, Portland and Chicago.
While rookie Bradley Beal has been consistently inconsistent, Emeka Okafor is a grown man on the boards, and John Wall is slowly rounding himself into game shape after missing the first 33 games of the year with a left knee injury. And then you have a guy like Jordan Crawford, who could wind up with either four or 28 points at the end of the night, and neither would be a surprise.
OK, but don't the Sixers own the Wizards at the Wells Fargo Center?
Yup. The 76ers have won the last four games that the two teams have played in Philly by an average of 21.5 points. Perhaps the scores would have been closer if Washington could have used actual D.C.-area natives instead of the players actually on their roster.
Is this the real Evan Turner?
I hope so: He's played well over the past four games (22.0 PPG, 6.8 RPG, 6.0 APG, 54.5 FG%, 60.0 3PT%). Of course, there are the inevitable comparisons to John Wall, but The Villain cares little about your comparisons...
#Sixers Turner on fellow top 2 pick John Wall: 'I like myself too much to worry about anybody else.'— Tom Moore (@tmoorepburbs) January 29, 2013
When is Andrew Bynum coming back?
I'm not sure how to answer this one. How can he "come back" if he never arrived in the first place?
Is there anything else that I need to know about tonight?
This is something of a revenge game for 76ers' point guard Shelvin Mack, who was waived by the Wizards on Jan. 7. But other than that, no.