Mar 25, 2013, 8:22 PM EDT
The Philadelphia 76ers (27-42) are currently sitting at 9th place in the Eastern Conference while their opponent tonight, the Utah Jazz (34-36), are 9th in the Western Conference. The Jazz actually share the ninth spot and are just two games behind the Lakers for the final playoff berth in the West. That said, they haven’t been playing real well as of late, having lost four in a row at the hands of the Knicks, Rockets, Spurs, and Mavs.
Mar 25, 2013, 11:54 AM EDT
The reasons for the Sixers’ surprisingly improved proved play of late—four wins in their last seven games, including victories over the playoff-bound Nets and Pacers and extremely close losses to the NBA-hottest Heat and Nuggets—are many. The team’s frontcourt has been playing dramatically better: Spencer Hawes has averaged a 16/10 on 56% shooting over the stretch, and Thaddeus Young, finally healthy again after missing a couple weeks with a hamstring strain, has matched with a 17/7 on 55% shooting. Dorell Wright has also rediscovered his Golden State shooting stroke, averaging 12 a game and shooting 19 of 38 from deep, and with the exception of a dismal two-point performance in Los Angeles, Jrue Holiday has been Jrue Holiday, averaging about 17 points and nine assists, shooting 48% from deep and even keeping his turnover average to under three a game.
Mar 25, 2013, 12:11 AM EDT
Well, so much for that whole tanking thing. It appears the Sixers will, for better or worse, be trying to actually win the remaining 13 games on their schedule, and while that’s arguably detrimental to the team’s long-term prospects—though with a draft this uncertain, who knows how beneficial a higher draft slot will even be—it at least makes for some surprisingly watchable games, such as tonight’s 117-103 beatdown of the Kings in Sacramento, by some distance the team’s greatest offensive outing of the season.
Mar 24, 2013, 5:25 PM EDT
For better or worse, professional basketball still exists for the city of Philadelphia for another three weeks or so. The Sixers aren’t really chasing a playoff spot or a lottery slot, so there’s not a ton left to root for, but it’ll at least be fun to watch Jrue Holiday and Thaddeus Young (and Evan Turner one in every four games or so) continue to grow together as a foundation for the team’s future, and interesting from a cosmic perspective to see if Spencer Hawes, Dorell Wright and Damien Wilkins can continue their unexpected streak of playing like highly competent NBA rotation players. And, of course, seeing how the Sixers can follow up their legendary choke job in Denver a couple nights ago will be pretty fun too.
Mar 22, 2013, 3:00 AM EDT
You likely watched a whole lot of basketball on Thursday afternoon and into the wee hours of Friday morning. There were some great moments all day long and even in the Sixers game too. They played the streaking Nuggets tough just a night removed from their loss to the Clippers in LA. But it all came crashing down in an instant. Okay, not an instant exactly. It was 14.3 seconds to be precise. That’s how long it took the Sixers to lose a 5 point lead and the game.
Mar 20, 2013, 5:10 PM EDT
That was a fun four games at the Wells Fargo Center. Surprisingly, I’m not even being all that sarcastic when I say that—that was actually four well-played games of basketball, albeit ones that arguably place us further away from our primary goal for the rest of the season (tanking for Victor Oladipo or Alex Len or whoever) than when we started. Still plenty of time to lose basketball games left, however, as the Sixers are fairly likely to demonstrate to us tonight as they face the Clippers in a late start in Los Angeles.
Mar 19, 2013, 2:55 PM EDT
With the Flyers tumbling further and further down the standings, it looks like the home teams are going to let the people down in a way they haven’t in nearly two decades.
Mar 19, 2013, 10:18 AM EDT
It’s official—this season is last season in reverse. Instead of starting out weirdly red hot and gradually cooling off over the course of their season until they hit super rock bottom, they’re gonna start from super-rock-bottom this time and get weirdly red hot at year’s end. Going in this direction is certainly more perplexing than the way things went down last season, and possibly even more frustrating, but it’s arguably much less cruel, since at least it’s too far late in the year for this team for trick us into thinking they can win a division or challenge the Heat or something.
Mar 18, 2013, 8:10 PM EDT
In a statement released via email tonight during halftime of the 76ers game against the Portland Trailblazers in South Philadelphia, the team announced that center Andrew Bynum will not play a single game for them this season.
Mar 17, 2013, 12:06 PM EDT
Nate Thurmond. Alvin Robertson. Hakeem Olajuwon. David Robinson. We almost nearly had to add a fifth name to that list last night, as Spencer Hawes came just two assists and three blocks short of registering a quadruple-double last night at the Wells Fargo Center, ending with what must be the best stat line of his career—18 points, 16 rebounds, eight assists, seven blocks, and zero game-blowing layup misses, in a game that the Sixers won—won, as in the opposite of lost—against the Indiana Pacers. The blocks and rebounds were both career highs for Spence, and the assists was one shy—which all in all is a pretty remarkable night to have in your 403rd career NBA game.
Mar 16, 2013, 2:47 PM EDT
Who’s the best team in the East that isn’t the Miami Heat? It doesn’t really matter, since the Heat are so laughably superior to every other team in the conference right now, but one of the teams with a case would be the Indiana Pacers, who overcame a slow start to the season (and an injury to their nominal best player, Danny Granger) to climb to a 40-25 record, second-best not in the West (though they’d only be #6 over there, and not even all that close to #5). Still, like many teams not based out of South Florida, the Pacers have struggled a bit as of late, dropping one at home last night to the Lakers (playing without Kobe Bryant) and getting blown out by those damn Heat a couple games earlier.
Mar 14, 2013, 11:38 AM EDT
We talked at length last night about Jrue Holiday’s wonderful dunk over Lebron James to tie the game at 91 with a minute and change to play, calling it the moment of the year at the Wells Fargo Center, but we just found this awesome AP photo from behind the backboard of the moment the slam was about to go down and felt the need to post it.
Mar 13, 2013, 10:07 PM EDT
In a way, this was sort of a best of both worlds situation for the Sixers. Sure, it would have been fun to snap the Heat’s near-historic win streak, get the team their first win against Miami since they were starting Sherman Douglas and Rony Seikaly, and cause LeBron’s hairline to recede back a little further. Instead, they gave their fans one of the most entertaining games of the season (and easily the play of the year at the WFC), showed why the Sixers do still have some potential for the future remaining, all without further disrupting the master plan of Tankapalooza ’13. Everyone’s a winner, really.
Mar 13, 2013, 8:03 PM EDT
Lebron James’s pregame dunk routines have caused quite a stir over the past few weeks. It all started when one of his ridiculous “mid-air, pass-through-the-legs, off-the-glass, one-handed dunks” before a game with the Cleveland Cavaliers last month hit YouTube and had basketball fans everywhere in awe. It was the kind of dunk fans yearn for in the dunk contest every All-Star Weekend.
Mar 13, 2013, 5:44 PM EDT
You know what was fun? The Sixers’ first 52 games of the year. Well, not really, at all but at least there was one very unfun thing we didn’t have to do over that timespan—play the Miami Heat. Of course, playing the Heat zero times in the first 52 games of the season means you…
Mar 12, 2013, 1:37 PM EDT
Young guys. Talented or potentially talented. Ruled extraneous with the addition of two high-profile, veteran acquisitions at their positions. Acquisitions that have not gone to plan. The young guys, by the way, are flourishing. By now, we’re all familiar with the tale of Nik Vucevic, whom the Sixers selected 16th overall out of USC in…
Mar 12, 2013, 11:13 AM EDT
Your browser does not support iframes. Spencer Hawes had perhaps his best offense effort of the season last night in the Sixers impressive win over the Brooklyn Nets in South Philadelphia (more on that here). Sure, he struggled defending Brook Lopez, but Spence was looking good with the ball in his hands at the other…
Mar 11, 2013, 9:56 PM EDT
If it seems like I only write Sixers recaps after they win these days…it’s because I only write Sixers recaps after they win these days. There’s no point in recapping Sixers losses anymore because they’re not really news, they’re just the regular course of action—even losing to the Magic at this point can hardly be…
Mar 11, 2013, 6:05 PM EDT
It’s more a credit to how bad they’ve been on the road than anything, but despite now being 16 games under .500 for the season with last night’s embarrassing-for-most-teams loss to the Magic, the Sixers actually have a winning record at the Wellls Fargo Center. Yup, your Liberty Ballers are 17-16 on their home floor,…
Mar 11, 2013, 1:18 PM EDT
He wants out of Orlando, he doesn’t want out of Orlando. He wants Stan Van Gundy fired, he doesn’t want Stan Van Gundy fired. He wants to dictate the terms of his free agency, he isn’t a free agent. He finally gets his wish to go to one of his two preferred markets, he realizes…
Mar 10, 2013, 5:07 PM EDT
As of a couple weeks ago, the Sixers have pretty well committed themselves to tanking this season—whether they actually meant to do so or not—going 1-11 in their last 12 games. When you look at that stat and consider that the team wasn’t all that good to begin with, you’d think they’d be well on…
Mar 8, 2013, 5:26 PM EDT
1. The Sixers convince the Heat that they traded for Spencer Hawes at the deadline and just forgot about it (but were super-excited about their acquisition when it happened), then attack him on the interior all night. 2. The Sixers adopt a “Hack-a-Bosh” strategy halfway through the second quarter, confusing the Heat’s big man into…
Mar 6, 2013, 6:19 PM EDT
The Sixers don’t have a whole lot to play for tonight as they visit the Hawks in Atlanta—no playoffs to contend for, no natural rivalry, even the usual motivation of wanting to stick it to Lou Williams isn’t really there, since Sweet Lou’s out for the season with a torn ACL. I never like losing…
Mar 6, 2013, 5:59 PM EDT
Sixers guard Jeremy Pargo, whose last name was my choice for the #Sixersmovies hashtag game on Twitter this afternoon, hit a pretty impressive trick shot prior to the team’s game with the Hawks down in Atlanta this evening. According to beat writer Christopher A. Vito, Pargo went 1-5 in his attempt at trick shot glory.…
Mar 6, 2013, 11:26 AM EDT
After his 5-5 game off the bench last night against the Celtics in the Sixers’ loss in Philly, our first-round pick Arnett Moultrie now…. -Has made his last 12 shot attempts, stretching back over the last four games (in about 40 total minutes). -Leads the team in Player Efficiency Rating with his 18.1 (Jrue Holiday…
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