After one good game, I'm not ready to remove the "Reggie Evans 2.0" tag from Elton Brand, but tonight was a step in the right direction. He played inspired basketball from the get-go, showed off his three-inch vertical, positioned himself for offensive rebounds, and used his long arms to disrupt the awful Bobcats offense. In other words, he did everything an 80-million dollar man should do, including getting the game-winning deflection. I never watched Elton in Los Angeles, but I'm starting to think that he was never the "explosive" athlete we thought he was, and his 20-10 numbers were product of him playing on a bad team (except for one year), and having the offense run exclusively through him. Not to sound like Jon Gruden or anything, but that "explosion" we're looking for from Elton in terms of athleticism might never happen. That said, he might not need explosive athleticism to be a good player, which was evident tonight. Elton turned in his best game of the season, and the rumors of him being benched clearly lit a fire.
- When the Sixers struggled defensively -- mainly in the first quarter -- Lou Williams was the main culprit. Lou cannot stop penetration or rotate correctly. (Thaddeus has trouble rotating as well.) The most frustrating thing about Lou is that he has all the tools to be a good defensive player, but things like stopping penetration and rotating correctly don't show up in the stat sheet, nor do they reflect directly on him. Point being, Lou is either lazy, not a team player, or both. On offense, Lou played pretty well, but not well enough to make up for his bad defense, in my opinion.
- The Sixers biggest offensive problem is settling for too many jumpshots. You can see why this would be an issue, considering the team's biggest weakness is... shooting! Last year the Sixers were 6th in the NBA in free throws attempted and free throws made; this year they're 18th and 15th respectively.
- Rodney Carney is the Sixers best backup (now that M16 is hurt) and he showed why tonight. He should be the first guard off the bench every game. I'd even go as far as saying that he should replace Sam Dalembert in the starting lineup, moving Thad to the four and Brand to the five. Eddie had the right idea with benching one of his starters, but wanted to bench the wrong guy. Carney rebounds well, his defense is very, very good, he can make threes, and his athleticism is beastly. *Nickname Alert* RC Cola *Nickname Alert*
- FREE JRUE!!! FREE JRUE!!! FREE JRUE!!! NO MORE ROYAL IV!!! NO MORE ROYAL IV!!! NO MORE ROYAL IV!!! FREE JRUE!!! FREE JRUE!!! FREE JRUE!!! NO MORE ROYAL IV!!! NO MORE ROYAL IV!!! NO MORE ROYAL IV!!! FREE JRUE!!! FREE JRUE!!! FREE JRUE!!! NO MORE ROYAL IV!!! NO MORE ROYAL IV!!! NO MORE ROYAL IV!!!
- Overall, the Sixers are still a very mediocre/bad basketball team and did nothing to disprove that tonight. How many times are we going to say, "A win's a win" this year? The best part about tonight was we hardly mentioned Eddie Jordan's name.
Player of the game: Elton Brand with 19 points, 11 boards, 6 blocks and 3 steals.