The Sixers are losing; and losing to a point where one may think it's on purpose (which it should be). The season is almost over and we just might be able to start cheering for victories (woah, woah, woah let's not say things we can't take back). Eddie Jordan may or may not have already started packing up his bowling trophies, miss congeniality awards, and the best mouth decorations plaque from last year's ESPYs in anticipation of being axed by the big boys upstairs. Anyway, enjoy the linky-winkies for Sunday as it would mean a lot to me and Eddie. If you got a chance to see Sir Wesley Johnson today, you truly got a good look at what he could be in the NBA. It was one of, if not, the best game of his collegiate career.
It seems this team's fans don't so much dislike Iguodala's overall game, they just wish the guy would humble himself and recognize that he isn't an outside shooter.
And what's wrong with not being an outside shooter? Nothing, if you recognize you're not.
Anyone watching the Sixers recognizes that Iguodala's game is electric, but at times he seems too busy trying to prove people wrong - trying to will himself into being an outside shooter - when instead he should be proving people right by slashing to the rim for dunks and leading the break.
"It happens to the good teams, and when it happens to the teams like us, it doesn't look as good - it probably looks worse," Jordan said. "That's the way it is in life in the NBA. And that's why I went to young guys, to give us a spark."
"Elton didn't give us a spurt," Jordan said. "Look, it happens, just going to write it off. He just didn't have the energy, didn't have it. I know you'll go back to him and say, 'Coach said you didn't have energy.' But that's the way I looked at it."
...the lack of a pass-first point guard was the first nail in the Princeton offense's coffin.
But here's something that's been less talked about: The lack of an all-purpose big man. Sammy Dalembert can hardly shoot, much less pass. Marreese Speights may or may not be the basketball equivalent of a black hole-once you pass him the ball, you'll never get it back. And Elton Brand's averaging a full assist less than he has over his entire career.
Jordan debuted a rotation that had to be designed when he was drunk ; players would go from 20 minutes one night to 42 minutes the next with no apparent warning.
But Jordan's offensive sets, rotation wackiness, and overall disconnect from his roster suggest to me that Jordan and the Sixers were too much of a square peg, round hole match to work.
Brand entered Saturday night's game against the Bulls averaging 6.5 rebounds - a precipitous drop for a guy who averaged double-digit boards in each of his first five NBA seasons and even averaged 8.8 rebounds in his injury-truncated 29-game stint with the Sixers a year ago.
In 56 minutes played against New York in a pair of losses, Brand had a grand total of six rebounds, with just two coming on the defensive glass.
...for a team that was a plus-221 on the glass two seasons ago and plus-155 last season, the fact that the Sixers are a mere plus-32 this season speaks to some of their problems.
"I got a hold of a bad bed on the road or something," he said. "It got unbearable on Monday. I woke up [Monday] and I was fine, then I started playing on the Internet a little bit. I got up off the couch and couldn't move. I felt like a 60-year-old man. They said I was having back spasms. The chiropractor said he felt some tension."
After years of walking around like a 60-year-old-man, I've found the key to successfully playing on the Internet in bed or on a couch - multiple pillows. You're going to want at least two behind the head to prop it up. Then the trick is to raise your knees just a little, put a pillow on your thighs and put your laptop on it.
And if you're on the bench, chilling, in an abject blowout, and you're a star point guard, what else are you going to do? You're going to do the chicken dance.