A start with many surprises
Posted by Ricky - Sixers4guidos on November 9, 2007
The biggest suprises to me are, in this order: A) Clippers at 4-0, B) Chicago at 0-4, C) Indiana at 3-1, D) Golden State at 0-4.
I think none of these records is a sign of a season different than expected for any of these teams, but anyway… as for now, numbers are numbers.
But I am writing this after somehow watching Sixers trouncing the Bobcats 94-63 so I have to tell my impressions about my beloved team. It’s the second entire game I managed to catch, the first one being the loss to the Raptors, and here is what I think.
* Sixers play good team defense and seem a united group. Atmosphere in the locker room is probably the right one
* they never give up. With Raptors, they were down 22 and fought back to -1. Good thing indeed, they always play hard. Maybe that is also another sign that they play as a unit. Not so easy when you have a roster of young players
* offense is very balanced. I’ve made a little research and here is what I found:
Sixers always had at least four players in double figure in each of the four games played; vs Charlotte, four players had more than 10 points and two had 9.
Sixers scored with at least nine different players in each of the four games played. Vs Charlotte, ten players scored.
* rebounding issues are not as dramatic as they were last year. Sixers were widely outrebounded only one time (55-36): surprisingly, this came in the nice W @ Bulls… on the other side, the only game when the battle under the boards was won (46-37), Sixers lost, @ Toronto. In the other games, the edge in favour of our opponent was thin (vs NJ 47-44, vs Charlotte 46-45)
* Sixers are the team with the worst low post scorers in the league, and possibly in the history of the game (LOL). Really, we have ZERO options, nobody is able to create a shot there. In this last game, even putting 94 points in a +31 win, we scored ONCE with a low post move: a turn around jumper by Dalembert at the start of the third quarter.
Vs Toronto I saw they had a couple of isolations with Reggie Evans (!!) trying to find a way with his back to the basket: I almost threw up. A serious team should never, and I mean never, run an offensive play for Reggie Evans.
* free throw shooting needs to be addressed, and this as soon as possible. Currently our 68,6% from the line puts us at the 26th place in the NBA.
* same story for three point shoooting. 26th also in this category, with a modest 29,6 %.
Both these statistics are pretty shocking, since we have some good shooters (for both FT and 3p) in the team. I am confident that this will change soon. Iguodala, for instance, last year shot 82% from the charity stripe, so his current 66% can only rise.
Speaking of SINGLE PLAYERS, here are some notes:
Andre Iguodala: nice start, he is still Iggy. His shots will fall soon. Just needs to take better care of the ball: too many turnovers, and often not forced. Not a big problem at all, anyway.
Andre Miller: impressive. What a player. Again, keep him for the whole year, he needs to carry this team for the season and go on teaching Williams the job.
Rodney Carney: not bad. Improving, finally. Not as much as I expected, maybe, but he has taken the right road, it seems. I am impressed by how a player with a full 4 years in a good college under his belt can still be so raw: sometimes it seems nobody taught him some fundamentals, like using the left hand, not falling for pump fakes etc.
Still unconsistent, also in a single game (like: one good play immediately followed by an awful brick), often frenetic. The stat: 1/12 from 3 pt land (two airballs vs Charlotte…) and 11/17 from 2 points. Self explaining, I guess. Calm your ass down Rodney, you’ll play better.
Lou Williams: he will be special, I think. Too many signs tell me this. I’m sure I won’t miss this prediction, for once. He oozes talent. Two fantastic dunks vs Charlotte, one on Gerald Wallace (in the picture).
Jason Smith: I really like him. Very active under the boards, sweet touch. A young, leaping seven footer. Nice, isn’t it?
Thaddeus Young: tonight I saw his first game in the NBA and his first play (a turnover, LOL). But also his first basket, with a nice a drive on the right (!). Hopefully many thousands will follow.
Willie Green: he is playing well, I admit. Under control. After writing this, I can go to bed 🙂