Sixers 4 guidos

The first italian Sixers blog

Oh my God, are we playoffs bound ???!!!

Posted by Ricky - Sixers4guidos on February 8, 2008

76c0f7afdac37d76e4f5ed63dd248398-getty-76075364jg019_heat_sixers.jpgOn the first italian Sixers blog I have a lot of entries filed under “lottery” but I didn’t create the “playoffs” category yet.

Looks like I might do that, because after the 101-84 home win vs the Miami Heat Sixers’ record is 20-30 (.400), that actually means we are 1/2 game short of the 8th seed in the East: Nets and Bulls are tied there at 20-29… how sad weird is that?

In the West Houston (29-20) today would be out of the playoffs, but the same record would secure Rockets home court advantage in the first round in our conference !!!! 

You see, something is wrong here, and the fact that winning just four of our last six games put us “up” there is another sign that it’s not your typical NBA season… anyway… yes, I am still in tanking mode, and I wouldn’t like a first round sweep by the Celtics + a low pick, but this is like it is, so let’s take the good part.

Last night Sixers won an ugly game vs a Shaq-less, Marion-less, Banks-less, Haslem-less, hope-less Miami team that lost even Alexander Johnson (??) during the game due to a sprained ankle. Pat Riley reportedly asked Alan Ogg and Bimbo Coles to come back and suit up for the game but they turned down Miami’s 24 hrs-50 $ offer sheet.

You got it, not much to say about the real game, honestly. The kind of game where the team that is supposed to win, wins, even not putting much effort. No, I am not bragging, Sixers fans are never in position to brag, it’s just that THIS Heat team never had a real chance to steal it from us, even when they were up in the third. You could see by their body language, their “intensity”, that they knew they were going to lose.  I’ll remind just few flashes.

In the FIRST QUARTER Andre Miller uncharacteristically forced some shots initially but then managed to score 10 points and turn a 15-21 deficit into a 30-24 final lead: a 15-3 Sixers run, exactly.

The best play of the night came in the SECOND QUARTER when Carney put Wade on the wrong side of the poster with an emphatic dunk (+ foul, in the picture), after a nice feed by Lou Williams. Jason Smith had a nice contribution hitting both of his shots, and Andre Miller scored on a fastbreak after taking FOUR steps… I knew NBA rules were never that strict as for traveling violations, but the refs took it to another level this time (LOL). The score was 54-50 at the break.

Mark freaking Blount – who “risked” to become a Sixer when Jim O’ Brien was our coach, remember ?? JOB was pushing King to bring Blount to Philly… – scored five consecutive points in the third and gave Miami a 67-70 lead, but Sixers went on a 6-0 run capped by another great dunk, this time by Lou Williams, assisted by Evans (!!!), to end the quarter up, 75-72.

In the FOURTH QUARTER Rodney Carney had two more spectacular plays, when he blocked Dwyane Wade and Earl Barron on consecutive possessions. Wade then returned Carney the initial favor, dunking on him while being fouled. After the play, Heat guard was called for a tech because of taunting: he went towards Carney when Rodney was lying on the floor and yelled something at him. Frustration was clearly growing for Wade, but that remained his only field goal of the second half.

Iguodala eventually went to work and scored 13 in the period to close the game, getting some help from Willie Green. Dala’s second three of the game set the final score at 101-84.

I would like to mentions some things letf:

1) Thad Young had another smart, solid, silent, very good game. He doesn’t seem a 19 y/o rookie, really. He never forces a thing and he’s never nervous, or lost… good stuff.

2) I think that Reggie Evans’ productivity almost doubled since he was pulled out of the starting line up. Not kidding. I think this situation, with him coming off the bench I mean, is the best for him and for the team. 14 boards in 25 minutes, are you kididng me? And two dimes 🙂

3) our free throw shooting has been poor all season, but now is becoming atrocious. 14 misses from the line, with Evans collecting “only” four ?? I really have no explaination for that.

4) we played good defense on Wade. Of course it’s easier to double team him when Shaq is gone and all the others are bricking shots (Ricky Davis played an AWFUL game, same for Cook… they missed tons of wide open jumpers)  but still we were effective on him.

Sixers play the Clippers on Saturday, and they will be on the second night of a back-to-back. Log on to Clips Nation (there you will find a chat about the Sixers I had with Steve) and Clipperblog for some serious coverage about LA’s finest team 🙂

SIXERS4GUIDOS BONUS STATS AND RANDOM THOUGHTS

Wade shot 1/9 from the field in the second half – Mark Blount is known for being a poor rebounder for his size and a soft player but he had 10 boards and three “and one” plays last night, go figure – Iguodala blocked him on a drive, though – No offense but who the f’k is Alexander Johnson ????? – Sam Dalembert didn’t play at all in the fourth.

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