Where are these young Sixers going?
Posted by Ricky - Sixers4guidos on April 19, 2009
Sixerdave is finally back to work.
I just received two articles by him, and here is the first one, a recap of the (regular) season just finished, with some thoughts about 2009/2010.
SIXERS END ROCKY SEASON AT .500
The Sixers have earned a first round playoff series with the Orlando Magic to end the season.
It was a turbulent season that saw Maurice Cheeks get fired as head coach, Elton Brand struggle with injuries and young players step into different roles and positions.
By beating an undermanned Cavaliers team, the Sixers moved to 41-41, a one game improvement over last season.
With Chicago losing to Toronto, the Sixers were able to leapfrog the Bulls into the 6th position in the Eastern Conference.
With Garnett out, the Sixers may have benefitted from staying in the 7th position, however this week the Sixers couldn’t beat Boston with Garnett and Allen both out of the lineup.
Orlando also presents problems for Philadelphia. Dwight Howard is one of the best players in the league. Hedo Turkoglu and Rashard Lewis will provide challenges for Andre Iguodala and Thaddeus Young.
Looking back at the 2008-2009 season, we immediately think of Brand’s injuries, Cheeks’ firing, and interim coach Tony Dileo. But the question is – what direction is this team going?
Most of the core is young and growing. As difficult as it is to believe, Iguodala is just 25 years old. Marreese Speights, Thaddeus Young, Lou Williams, and Jason Smith are 23 or younger.
But Brand will be coming off an injury yet again. What impact will Brand have? And can he gel with our younger players? Will he be an 18 and 10 guy, or a 14 and 8 guy? Will the Sixers consider his signing to be a failure and trade him at the deadline next season?
Team leader Andre Miller - in the pic - becomes a free agent this offseason. Do the Sixers resign him? He’s getting older and his lack of speed showed in his recent effort against Boston. Should the Sixers hand the keys to Lou Williams? Golden State, Sacramento, and Portland could be interested in Miller’s services and it is well known that Miller prefers the West Coast.
By keeping Miller on board, the Sixers could be challenging for the last few playoff spots in the East. But is he the guy to lead us to elite status in the East? At his age, it’s unlikely. Maybe the Sixers need to take a step back to take a step forward by going back into the draft and finding a star to lead them back to the top.