David 1, Goliath 0. Not too bad of a Game 1
Posted by Ricky - Sixers4guidos on April 20, 2009
Or, in other – and more polite- words, F’N UNBELIEVABLE.
This game winner by Andre Iguodala with 2.2 seconds left capped a memorable comeback and gave Sixers a 98-100 win at Orlando (Magic 0 – Sixers 1).
Enjoy it in high definition:
With that tough 22-foot fadeway jumper over Turkoglu, that by the way eventually missed the last second three that would have given Orlando the win, Iguodala (more than) made up for a couple of big free throws he bricked missed before, with Sixers down one (96-95) and 1.07 minutes to play.
(Wanna have some good laughs? Log on to the Sixers board of philly.com – scroll down to “Discuss Sixers” – and read the threads started by some posters BEFORE the end of the game…I’ll give you some titles: “Iggy, the essence of mediocrity”, “Max contract Iggy”, “Nice FTs Iggy”… gotta love positive, optimistic, patient Philly fans, LOL).
But it was a team effort and a lot of guys should get the praise.
And Orlando should get part of the blame, of course, because there is no way you can let a 18-point lead evaporate late in a playoffs game: it was 79-61 Magic with 1.12 left in the third !
How did we come to that? Let’s take a step back.
The bad news for the Sixers is that Superman exists. The good news is that his team is beatable.
As much anticipated, Dwight Howard completely dominated in the paint, shooting 84% and even making his free throws: how about 24 points on 9/11 + 14 rebounds and 6/8 from the line at the end of the third? We saw a lot of this:
He didn’t get much help, though, if you take out surprising rookie Courtney Lee (18 through the first three periods) and just two flashes by Lewis and Alston, who contributed seven in the third, the quarter that seemed to have closed the game.
Sixers shot 7/18 and had five, costly turnovers in that stretch, while Orlando connected on ten-of-eighteen and played solid basketball with its effective combination of inside/outside game.
At the start of the fourth, at 79-65, the game seemed pretty much in control for the Magic, that had only to manage the lead.
But Sixers had some cards left to play. Tony DiLeo put Marshall in since the beginning and the veteran delivered, as usual. In his own words:
“You’ve got to understand, when I come into the game we’re usually down 15 points,” Marshall joked. “So my job is just to come in and shoot.”
Donyell knocked down three of Sixers’ five three pointers in the fourth (with Williams and Ivey drilling the other two) and Sixers tied the game at 91 on a layup by Andre Miller with four minutes to play.
There were a lot of wonderful plays during the run (it came to 20-5, then I stopped taking notes..), including an alley oop dunk by Lou Williams, two big throwdowns by Theo and a banked floater by the same Marshall. Sixers were like possessed, Magic stunned, and I was screaming and jumping all over the place – trying not to wake up wifey…
The end made all even sweeter, especially considering we (ALL) had thought that we blew our chance after Andre couldn’t convert those two from the line. Nevermind.
After the missed freebies, Howard had a thunderous dunk to put Magic up three (98-95), Marshall tied it at 98 with his last trey with 35 seconds to play, and Lewis missed an open jumper, setting the stage for Iguodala’s heroics.
20, 8 and 8 + the game winner. I’m glad I waited for the end of the game before starting my own thread on the Sixers board: when I did it, the title was “Easier 22 ft fadeaways than FTs”, LOL.
Few bullets to end.
- We outscored the Magic from three point land, 7/12 vs 5/18. This is the most shocking stat in my opinion. Other than the final score, I mean.
- not only that, we even outrebounded Orlando !! 37-35.
- Lou Williams had a great game off the bench, really. Not to brag, but I told you so (see the comment)
- subpar performances by Lewis and Turkoglu were another key to the victory. They combined for 3 points on 1/6 at the half.
- can you believe Dalembert had a decent game? You wouldn’t say so looking at Howard’s stat line, but Sam did everything possible to contain him… the only boneheaded play was his fourth foul, at half court…
- the bench, the bench, the bench. I knew we had an edge there, and it showed. Well done, second unit !!!
SIXERS4GUIDOS’ BONUS STATS AND RANDOM THOUGHTS – Magic were 1/7 from behind the arc at the half – Anthony Johnson had a dunk on Ratliff to end the first period, I couldn’t believe my eyes… – Andre Miller had 8 points (4/5), 5 rebounds and 2 dimes in the first quarter - This is Third Quarter Collapse’s recap, and I’ll save them all jokes about changing the title of the blog, because that is a great site – Willie Green sucks – Willie Green is useless – Willie Green is a waste of an NBA guard – JJ Redick is “the white Willie Green” – Sixers used eleven players, with (a lost) Speights getting 6 minutes – I managed to catch the game, blackouted in Italy, on an unlikely streaming of NBC, with a turkish comment over it… their reaction after brother Hedo’s last miss wasn’t enthusiatic, LOL.