I have been trying to think of what to call this season. I could call it the season from hell. That sounds pretty good. Nah, get more creative Joe. How about the” Era of Bynum”, version TWO? I can save that one for another day. I know, “The Season That Never Was”. Man, that headline makes me sound intelligent. I like it.
It all started on one beautiful day back in August. We Sixers fans know it as the day of “Redemption”, the day of “Relevancy”. The day I speak of is August 14, 2012. Andrew Bynum day at the Constitution Center. I will never forget it. I hadn’t been that excited about the Sixers since the AI’s glory days. You know why I was so excited? Not just for me (die-hard Sixers fan unfortunately) but for the city. People seemed to care again about the Sixers. I wanted that “buzz” back for the Sixers so badly. Do you know what I had to go through to have a Sixers convo the past 7 years? Seriously.
I had these visions of Bynum controlling the paint, Hawes running the high post, Jrue and Evan creating. Having J-Rich and Dorell Wright knocking down open jumpers left and right, Thad being himself, doing what ever it takes to win, and Lavoy being physical down low. Kwame Brown, well I will stop there. Such promise.
For me it’s not even about missing the playoffs. It’s about false hope. Hope that the Sixers built for us that we fans are not use too. A hope that, yes, it is our time. It was our time to have a foundation, to have building blocks. Not just a one hit wonder (like last season), that we could be built like the Spurs or Thunder. That we where ready for the next step, all of this was false hope.
Am I mad at the Sixers for dealing for Bynum? No, no matter what I tell myself it still was the right move at the time. Do I think that Sixers knew that Bynum was hurt to extent? Yes, but not this bad. They took a shot and came up empty. Whatever…
What I am disappointed about is how they handled it PR wise. Bynum will be ready for the opener they said. Then they came out saying he will be ready by January. I get it. They were scared of the backlash. They had an opportunity to “Man-Up” about it and they didn’t. We have been toyed with way to long as Sixers fans.
Maybe, this whole thing is even bigger than Bynum? Just maybe, a new “Gullible” ownership got caught with their pants down. And a smart “Savvy” ownership (Lakers) stuck it to them. See the metaphor I just gave. I really wasn’t even trying to do that. It just worked out that way.
The bottom line is that we Sixers fans paid the price. Something that we have been used to, since Ed Snider decided to let Pat Croce walk. Adam Aaron and the Sixers double their season ticket base from Bynum. A large majority of last years season ticket holders renewed their tickets for this season (92 percent) and the Sixers quadrupled the sales of their 10 game packages this season.
As fans, what did we get? Another year of going nowhere fast, a misguided front office, a “gullible” new ownership, false hope and basically “A Season That Never Was”.