GET THIS GUY ED, PLEASE !!!!!!
Posted by Ricky - Sixers4guidos on February 5, 2008
Sixers need to sign Josh Smith. Sixers need to sign Josh Smith, Sixers need to sign Josh Smith (repeat until they actually sign him).
Ok, save the “You are getting carried away after he had a good game” BS, because that’s – exactly – just a BS.
This guy is an “all around beast” (LOL).
I don’t know if it’s a coincidence that Josh Smith explodes every time he meets the Sixers (remember his first game vs us this year?), anyway I think Stefanski should do everything that is possible, and even the impossible, to get him this summer.
This recap comes some hours late so no need to revisit the whole game, the point is that there is only one reason to explain how a 20 point Sixers lead (12-32 in the first) turned into the final 96-91 loss in Atlanta (18-30, .375) and the reason is the guy in the picture. Just some flashes.
The FIRST QUARTER looked more like a “Sixers dunk & layup party” than a real game. Scores: 2-9, 8-24, 9-28, 12-32, until the final 14-32. All in a shootaround-like atmopshere. Sixers had a 23-5 rebounding edge (correct, twentythree-to-five), outscored the Hawks 15-0 on fastbreaks and shot 52% vs Atlanta’s 26%. Andre Miller had 9 and Thaddeus Young (starting, again) 7. Unreal.
Then in the SECOND QUARTER “the other game” started. It was Josh Smith’s game. A nice spark for the Hawks came actually from Reggie Evans, who contributed with a blocked layup + a three seconds violation + an offensive foul in the 0-7 Hawks’ run to start the period. Then Smith simply took over, rejecting everything and everyone around his rim. He was the biggest factor in a 6-17 Atlanta break that put them back in the game.
Among the things to notice in the period, Rodney Carney’s airball on an easy jumper from the baseline, with the nearest Hawk 15 feet away from him. At the break it was 44-50 for the Sixers, with Tyron “neverending ugliness” Lue, Zaza Pachulia and Josh Childress making excellent contributions off the bench.
HALF TIME STATS had Andre Miller leading all scorers with 15, ahead of Iguodala with 10 and Young with 7. For the Hawks Josh Smith had 11 points and EIGHT BLOCKS (!!! tying Tree Rollin’s franchise record), Childress 10, Pachulia 7.
The THIRD PERIOD marked Atlanta’s first lead (55-54 on a three pointer by Anthony Johnson), and was good for me to realize that Josh Smith is not only an amazing athlete but also an excellent, complete basketball player with no major flaws. He had an impressive, strong drive to the basket that resulted in a three point play after being fouled by Iguodala, while Andre Miller was huge for us offensively with 10 points in the period (72-70 at the end).
Josh Smith’s best play of the night wasn’t a block, though (that’s the scariest thing). He had a stunning, ‘kiddesque’, no look assist to the other Josh in the FOURTH QUARTER, that helped the Hawks knocking down seven of their first eight shots (87-79).
Sixers cut it to one (87-86) but in the final possessions this was the sequence: Joe Johnson’s layup (91-88) – Carney rejected by Childress (…) – Horford offensive foul – Thaddeus Young rejected by Smith – Horford’s offensive rebound and putback (93-88, 39 seconds to go). Amen.
But it’s safe to say that Josh Smith almost singlehandedly kept the Hawks alive in the second quarter. Besides the 9 blocks (NINE !!) you have also to count some other 2-3 shots that didn’t go in because our players were afraid of him. If a player like that can add 9 dimes (NINE !) and also four steals in the night, then you know what I am talking about. I wouldn’t even mention the 19 points, that was the “easy” part.
Josh Smith is a restricted free agent and honestly Hawks would be nuts not to match any offer. But I’m going out on a limb and say that for a player like him I would sacrifice even Iguodala. Guys, Smith is freaking 22 y/o !!! He will turn 23 only in December, while Iguodala “already” turned 24 few days ago.
Of course the best thing would be to keep Iggy and add Smith to this core (imagine a front court with him and Dalembert…), but since this seems impossible, I would say that if Sixers have to make a choice, well, I think you have more chances to find another Iguodala through the draft or free agency than another Josh Smith.
GO GET HIM SOMEHOW !!!
Another serious issue that this game showed – one more time – and that we will have to address this summer is the three point/outside shooting. Sixers were 2/11 from behind the arc (no wonder we are DEAD LAST in the NBA for three point percentage) and simply confirmed they have no options vs set up defenses.
Taking it to the rim it’s nice, but when on the other side you find a beast like Smith, then you should look for different solutions, and some shots from the perimeter would help. Current Sixers have no reliable shooters, unfortunately, but only guards and forwards that can occasionally knock down a jumper. It’s a huge difference.
SIXERS4GUIDOS BONUS STATS AND RANDOM THOUGHTS
The Philips Arena made the Wachovia center look packed, LOL – Second time all star Joe Johnson wasn’t at 100% due to an injury but still made some big plays, showing his leadership – After deep thoughts, I came to the conclusion that Sixers should keep Andre Miller, one of these days I’ll make a post about that… unleass they trade him before that !! – Thaddeus Young fouled out for the first time in his career… another learning experience that came after a good game by our rookie – The two Joshes love to play together, Smith assisted Childress for several easy buckets – Our Smith, Jason, missed his third consecutive game – Andre Miller’s 29 points tied his season high.
Sixers play the Wizards in few hours, check Bullets forever for cool coverage about Washington: it’s one of the best NBA sites you can find, in my opinion.