Ok, first let’s take the hat off to the Orlando Magic.
They played a great t-e-a-m game despite all the absences, won 89-114, and deservedly advanced to the second round, 4-2. End of the story.
Now let’s talk about the Sixers’ game. Horrible. Awful. Atrocious. Embarassing. I don’t know what to say.
We simply weren’t ready to play, we didn’t come out to play. Not “play hard”, play. We didn’t show up.
I won’t waste time recapping the game, analyzing this and that, breaking down individual performances. Sixers were outplayed, outrebounded, outhustled, outfucked by the Orlando Magic’s reserves in a 48 minute-butt whipping.
Forget the stats, while Bulls and Celtics were making history (third overtime just started as I’m typing this), Sixers pulled out a memorable choking act, losing all of the four periods, giving up 62 points and 57% from the field (23/40, including 6/9 from three) in the first half and trailing constantly in double digit until the final buzzer, with margins from eleven to the final twentyfive.
I could mention at least four embarassing plays for each Sixer that was put on the floor: turnovers, airballs, dunks on, shots blocked etc. I won’t go on details as it could be very painful.
Gortat = a polish David Robinson. JJ Redick = Ray Allen part II. Rafer Alston = the new Dennis Johnson. It was that kind of night.
The truth is Sixers are far from being a good playoffs team, and many things have to be re-evaluated this summer, taking this crappy game into consideration.
The sad end of course doesn’t take anything from the good things that were done before, including the two wins versus Orlando, a team that was supposed to blow us, but it’s a clear sign that something is still lacking, especially in the players’ minds.
2008/2009 Sixers improved of only one game from the previous regular season (from 40 to 41 wins) and repeated the exact sequence of last year’s playoffs series, winning the first game on the road and going up 2-1, only to see the season end with three straight losses.
The season perhaps didn’t, but the final game surely deserved all the boos that the crowd rained on the team. A shameful finish indeed.
Let’s leave the main stage to the grown folks, we still have a lot of homework to do.