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Sixers beat Nets, barely.

Until further notice, the Sixers are a below average basketball team and there are very few games they "should" win, but this was one of them. For a team with as many talented players as the Sixers, it shouldn't take 48 minutes to eek out a win against a depleted Nets team, who came into tonight's game with an 0-7 record and only 8 players on their active roster. I'm not taking anything away from the Nets because they are an NBA team and what they lacked in health and talent, they made up with effort and team ball. I guess that's what it comes down to; the Sixers have some good players, but they aren't a good team -- yet. 

That said, they still won the game and evened their record at 4-4. But after eight games, their record isn't what concerns me; it's how they've gotten there.

Here are a few things we can agree on after eight games. 

  1. According to rumors -- mostly from disgruntled Wizards fans -- Eddie Jordan was tough on rookies. Well, they're no longer rumors. From not playing Jrue during a freakin' pre-season game because he was afraid Nate Robinson would damage his psyche to pulling Jrue after one rookie mistake, and sitting him for the remainder of the game, Eddie has done nothing to disprove the rumors. It'd be one thing if he was sitting Jrue in favor of a legit backup point guard, but he's playing Royal Ivey instead. Come on now. Rookies make mistakes, and Jrue shouldn't be expected to play perfect in order to stay on the court. 
  2. Elton Brand is done. I'm tired of waiting. We've made enough excuses for him. It's time to accept the fact that he's a rich man's Reggie Evans, with a higher basketball IQ and less hustle. He can't finish around the rim, and I cringe every time he takes a jump shot. 
  3. Marreese Speights needs to replace Sam in the starting lineup. I've said it before, and I'll say it again: M16 is the Sixers most talented offensive player. He's not the best defender -- so what. What he brings to the table on the offensive end heavily out-weighs what he doesn't bring on the defensive end. 
The one positive we can take out of tonight was the play of Thaddeus Young. To this point in the season, Thad has been nothing short of awful, but it was only a matter of time before he turned it around. I'm not ready to say he's officially turned it around after one good game against the Nets, but his jumper looked 10 times better than it had at any point during the season. If he can regain his late-season form of last year, paired with the improved play of Lou, Andre and Marreese, the Sixers should start to see improvement. 

I'm still holding out hope that Eddie Jordan's abysmal rotations will improve, the defense will improve, and the Princeton Offense will show up sometime within the next 12 games. It's still way too early to make any snap judgements, but if there's no improvement after 20 games, the Sixers are in deep, deep trouble, as is my 47-win prediction. 


Player of the game: Marreese Speights

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