A good, old fashioned blowout. They feel so good when they hit your lips. I expected an entertaining game, and an eventual Sixers victory, but I did not expect the Sixers to completely run the Suns out of the gym. I guess I didn't put enough stock into the fact that they're a really, really old team and they were playing their second game in two nights.
I'm not going to get to excited over the win itself for that specific reason. The Suns looked totally uninterested for most of the game. They looked old, which they are, and they looked tired and ready to go home. There are a few things I will get excited about though.
A 26-24 record is fantastic. I love seeing the wins and losses columns getting farther and farther away. Now only Memphis stands in the team's way of going into the All-Star break with a 27-24 record.
Marreese freakin' Speights. Remember this prediction in the preview?
2. At some point during the game we'll get to see Speights vs. Amare for a 5-minute span, and we will all react like this when we see what M16 has in store for Amar'e with an apostrophe.
Tonight Marreese took my prediction and ran with it.
Amare: 38 minutes, 19 points, 6 rebounds.
M16: 24 minutes, 24 points, 7 rebounds.
Speights said, "5-minute stretch? Boy, I'll give you 24 minutes of beast mode!" He did a little of everything tonight. He rebounded. He dunked. He threw down nasty, nasty alley-oops. He blocked shots. He made his free throws. It was incredible to watch. If nothing else happens for the rest of my sports viewing career, I want Speights to reach his full potential. Then, I'll die a happy sports fan...maybe.
Oh, and remember my second prediction in the preview?
1. A Philadelphia 76er finally scores 30 points tonight. I don't know who. I don't know how. But I have a really good feeling about it.
Thad must read the blog. He was trying to drop 30, and he might just have done it if the Suns kept the game close. He finished with 25 in 30 minutes. He's just another one of the Sixers young players that makes me blank in my pants.
Andre Iguodala also had another good game, but did so in a quiet fashion. He finished with 22 points, 7 assists, and 5 rebounds. After the game I looked at the box and was surprised Iguodala had 22 points. He made his living at the stripe going 10-11 and also had quite a few transition dunks and layups. The shot wasn't falling tonight.
Speaking of somebody's shot not falling, what the eff is wrong with Lou Williams? He was awful tonight. Awful! His play was the lone blemish on the great night for the Sixers and their fans. He takes some horrible shots, specifically the one at the end of quarters. Hi my name is Louis Williams and I'm going to dribble the ball at the top of the 3-point line for 20 seconds, then I'm going to do the same exact, basic crossover that I do every time. Then, get this, I'm going to pump fake and shoot a contested fadeaway at the buzzer. You'll never guess what happens 99 percent of the time. A miss. Get it together Lou! Take the ball to the hoop. You're young and athletic. You can get to the hoop whenever you want to. Stop settling for jumpers, especially when you suck at shooting them. You're shooting 39 percent on the season for goodness sake!
Even though Lou takes a bunch of stupid shots, dribbles too much, commits dumb turnovers and cannot run the offense, I do not want to hear any argument starting with, "I'd rather have Willie Green than Lou-Will." Lou still helps create a lot of the runs the Sixers go on with his athletic ability and unlike Willie, Lou has an uncanny connection with the man-child, Marreese Speights. Having a connection with the best big man on your team can take you a long way. Just look how far it got Mike Conley Jr. Burrrrn.
Sammy D also had another very solid game. He's finally accepting his role on the team.
That's all I got for tonight. Wednesday's matchup with the Grizzlies doesn't look like a "big" game on paper, but it can't be said enough how important it is to go into the All-Star break with momentum. Ending the unofficial first half of the season with a home loss to the Grizzles would hurt pretty bad, especially when they'll have five days to think about it.
Sometime later tonight I'll post Thaddeus's post game interview with NBATV.