Greetings, friends. It's been too long since we've last talked. I checked my post history before writing this and realized I haven't posted since mid-July. What a slacker.
Winning Culture: Sixers Down the Pelicans
Nerlens Noel and the 76ers put up a rare dominating performance and earn their largest margin of victory by beating the Pelicans by 15.
But enough about me; there's a Sixers game tonight. Philadelphia is in Detroit on the second night of a back-to-back after beating the New Orleans Pelicans at home on Friday night by a final score of 96-81. It sure helped that Anthony Davis and Jrue Holiday weren't playing but, hey, if you're going to rest your key players against the Sixers and expect an easy win, you have another thing coming. Ain't that right, Nerlens?
Unlike the Pelicans, the Sixers' Saturday night opponent will probably be at full strength. The Pistons are red hot recently. Deeetriot basketball is 10-2 since waiving the much-maligned Josh Smith in late December. Motor City is now 15-25 after starting out the season 5-23. Brandon Jennings has played surprisingly well and the front court duo of Andre Drummond and Greg Monroe can be problematic.
Tonight's game could be a little different from when the first time these two teams met in early December. Philadelphia won their second game of the season that night when they beat the Pistons in overtime, 108-101. That result of that game was especially hilarious due to the comments of Pistons head coach Stan Van Gundy PRIOR to the game:
"I don't care, [NBA commissioner] Adam Silver can say there's no tanking or what's going on [but] if you're putting that roster on the floor, you're doing everything you can possibly do to try to lose."
If that's the case, SVG, then the Sixers are failing miserably lately. They've won four out of their seven last games. And their loss to the Toronto Raptors was pretty respectable considering they were playing away on the second night of a back-to-back and missing both Robert Covington and Tony Wroten. The only real bad loss in that stretch was Philadelphia looking awful against the Bucks.
Sixers Mailbag Vol 11 - Jerami Grant, 3-pt shooter
In the 11th edition of the LibertyBallers Sixers mailbag we talk about what Tony Wroten can bring in a trade, how well Jerami Grant and Jordan McRae are progressing, a look at what future picks the Sixers have, as well as a look at the strengths of various international leagues.
The Sixers will try to make it five wins out of their last eight games. Nerlens Noel is coming off of what Brett Brown coined his "best game as a Sixer." The rookie big man will have his hands full defending the like of Monroe and Drummond. Michael Carter-Williams (20 points) and Robert Covington (25 points) had big games the last time these two teams met so the Sixers could really use a repeat performance from them as well.
It should be a fun game. Both teams are playing with confidence and the stakes are high (they're not). And you better buckle up because the Sixers are doing everything they can possibly do to try to win.
Sixers gonna get that W.
Tip is at 7:30 PM EST. The Sixers are at The Palace in Detroit. GameThread will be up at 7:00 - don't forget to join us for one last time this season. You can catch the game on TCN. You can listen live on the radio: 97.5 The Fanatic.