Tag Archives: Jrue Holiday

Sixers Balls: Scenarios…

Awww yeeesss… Let all SCENARIOS begin and there is a plethora of them. By the way, plethora has to be my favorite word of all-time. Before I get into the scenarios for the Sixers, here is a message from my sponsor..

So the Sixers have the 3rd and 10th pick in the first round. Not going to lie, to say I was slightly disappointed about the Sixers not getting the first overall pick is  an understatement. I was speechless. I honestly felt like my pet turtle died. I was so depressed. I know this draft is deep as hell, but I wanted Andrew Wiggins sooo baaadd. Well, I ‘m finally over it and ready to move on from my depression. I have put my full trust in Sam Hinkie.

To go along with the two-first rounders, the Sixers have the 32nd, 39th, 47th, 52nd, and the 54th picks. Hinkie could easily package a couple of those second rounders and get back a late-first rounder. As we found out quickly last year, Hinkie is locked and loaded to make moves.

There will be many more scenarios falling from the sky in the coming weeks leading up to the draft, but here are some I have found or heard so far.

Thad  to the Sacramento Kings for the 8th pick.

There would be a player that the Kings would send back and the Sixers would likely send a second rounder as well to make it work. If you’re going to move Thad, the Sixers might as well do it on draft night. I really would like to see Thad stay but this might be too good to pass up. Scott Howard-Cooper of  NBA.com reports that the Kings are looking for a veteran in exchange for the 8th pick.  Libertyballers reported that the Sixers and Kings came very close last year on striking a deal, involving DeMarcus Cousins and Jrue Holiday. The Kings are not interested in drafting and developing another kid. Hinkie’s gotta be all over this. I mean, if the Sixers can add the 8th pick, to go along with the 3rd and 10th, helloooo opportunities (trades)…

Then there is this: That would be just lovely, if Embiid’s back is truly healthy. There have been a ton of reports out all year on how much the Bucks loved him.  That would mean Jabari Parker or Wiggins could slide. Me likey.

Oh God, yes… I’m starting to feel better about  the Sixers chances for Wiggins. Jason Lloyd is a Cavs beat writer for the Akron Beacon Journal. Though I still see Embiid going here more than Parker, especially if the Cavs are going to make a run at LeBron. I don’t see them drafting  Parker or Wiggins if Embiid is healthy. Kyrie Irving, LeBron James and Embiid would be scary.

Aaron Gordon would a great pick at number 10, though I don’t see him sliding  down that far. It also seems that the Sixers may decide on shooter at the 10 spot. Look at Doug “Buckets” McDermott and Nik Stauskas. Maybe, even a solid two-way player-Garry Harris. I personally, love Harris.

The Sixers 3rd and 10th pick for 1st overall.

Yes, this might be the biggest one I heard so far. Could it happen? I mean, I don’t think you can say no when Hinkie’s involved.  I would definitely do it, if they do indeed trade Thad to the Kings for the 8th. Then you could see a Sixers lineup with Wiggins (1st pick) and  Gordon (8th pick) in it next year. By the way, both Bleacher Report and SBNation both have the Sixers drafting Wiggins with the 3rd pick in their latest mock drafts.

I’m spent…

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Sixers Balls: Hinkie was looking for Assets and got them

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The dust has settled after the most entertaining Sixers draft in a long time (maybe ever).  I would be lying to you if I didn’t tell you that losing Jrue is still bothering me. I’ve had a lot of people ask why in the world would Hinkie trade a 23-year old All-Star point guard for a guy that is coming with an ACL injury (Noel), then draft a point guard that can’t shoot (Carter-Williams).  It’s a fair question. I have even thought about that myself and the only thing I can come up with is “Assets”.

When I say assets I mean value in players. I put myself in Hinkie’s shoes. He took over a franchise that had no direction (thanks to the Bynum fiasco), not much talent on the roster, and fan base that was hanging on by a thread. The Sixers needed a shake up in the worst way and Hinkie knew it from day one in office. Hinkie looked down this roster and saw one guy with any real value around the league. Unfortunately, that was Jrue Holiday.  Spencer Hawes has some value (sorry to say it, but he does), Thad Young likely has a decent amount of value but not enough to garner the package the Sixers got for Jrue.  Evan Turner’s value? Who the hell knows. He looked to be traded a few times on draft night and nothing happen. Other then those three players nobody else would have any value.

So it came down to Jrue. Do I think that the Sixers could’ve built around Jrue?  Yes, but it would have likely taken longer.  Hinkie saw a team with one asset and he turned that one asset into two. Say what you want, if Noel hadn’t torn his ACL he would have likely gone number one overall. Some people have called him another Andrew Bynum. I totally disagree with that statement. Bynum has no cartilage and a degenerative knee condition. That is complete different than a torn ACL.

You have  Al Harrington, David West, Jamal Crawford, Kendrick Perkins, and Al Jefferson just to name a few who have been just as good after tearing their ACL’s. Obviously, everyone’s body is different but Noel is just 19- years old and he should be fine. What could be even more important is Hinkie acquired a 1st round pick in next year’s draft. The 2014 draft class is considered to be the deepest draft since the 2003 draft (LeBron, Melo ,Wade, Bosh,  and West).

I have said it before, sometimes you have to take a step back (maybe two or three) to move forward. Hinkie was looking for more assets for a team that barely had any and it looks like he accomplished that.

Sixers Balls: Just Exploded!

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Hinkie got his head out of the spread sheet finally and stopped his silence. He just dropped a bomb. The Sixers sent Jrue Holiday to New Orleans for Nerlens Noel  and 2014 first-round pick. The pick is Top 3 protected. You have to be shitting me. This draft is insane. I don’t even know what to think right now. I can’t believe Jrue is gone. What the fuck.. Well, Andrew Wiggins here we come..

If you don’t know much about Noel here is a scouting report.

Strengthens

One of the best pure shot blockers to come along in a number of years … He’s a more explosive leaper and has better on ball shot blocking ability than last year’s UK freshman intimidator Anthony Davis. While Davis had a little better lateral speed and ability to get to shots as a weakside defender, Noel’s ability to deny his man any daylight to the rim and be a rim protector makes him even more dominant, and a potential defensive enforcer for the NBA … An elite level athlete with great quickness and explosive leaping ability … Great length, reported 7’4 wingspan …

Weakness

Offensively, Noel’s game is rudimentary. He has shown some development but the general perception is that he will never be a strong offensive player, instead he impacts games with his defense, rebounding and athleticism … Won’t be able to “out-athleticize” opponents for baskets at the next level the way he has in college … Scores mainly on put backs and dunks when he gets a clear path to the basket, or when teammates are able to create for him Via NBADraft.com

Sixers Balls: The Season That Never Was…

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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”.

Sixers Balls: At least we have Jrue..

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In this hot-mess of a season, Jrue is this year’s silver lining. The 22 year -old is on his way to his first All-Star appearance and there should be many more to come. He’s actually the youngest All-Star in franchise history.

Jrue has developed into one of the best point guards in the league. The Sixers finally decided to hand over the KEYS to this team this past off-season. Doug finally put his trust into Jrue… Wait, what did I just say? Doug put what into Jrue? You know what I meant.

The former first round pick (17th overall) in 2009, has become building block for the next ten years. He did not have that much hype when was drafted by the Sixers. In his only year at UCLA, he played off the ball while Darren Collison (Mavericks) ran the show for the Bruins. Even though Jrue was considered one of the best PG’s in the nation when he recruited by UCLA.

In his first season as a 19-year-old he played behind Lou Williams and showed signs of his skill then. He averaged 8.o ppg and 3.8 assists 24.2 minutes a game. He had that veteran feel to the game even in his first year.  Then as the starting PG the next two seasons he made some strides even though Doug had the ball in the hands of Iggy and Lou-Will in key situations.

This year he has taken off and I love watching him play. Yes, I know he is turning the ball over a ton. He is actually second in the NBA in turnovers (152, average of 4.0 a game) and Harden is first (166, average of 3.9 a game). Turnovers are going to happen when a young player is given full freedom out on the court. I can almost guarantee that Jrue will learn to turn the ball over less. Jrue has also gotten praise around the league.

Steve Nash’s quote on Jrue..

 “I think he gives them obviously a very talented players but he also makes guys around him better.  He makes it more difficult for you to guard [Evan] Turner[Jason] Richardson and the other guys on the perimeter

He’s a terrific player,” Nash said.  “He’s an All-Star this year” via LATimes.com

Jrue’s ride started back in the summer when he and Kyrie Irving were hoopin against the Olympic team. Jrue was on the USA Select Team this past summer. Holiday thinks that played a big part in his breakout season…

It was definitely big playing with the USA Select Team this summer,” Holiday said. “Obviously, playing against the best players in the world and just seeing what they do, how they think and just picking their brains. That, and then the experience in the playoffs. A little bit of Derrick Rose,Paul Pierce and KG (Kevin Garnett), you just learn so much, so it was definitely big.” via CSN

Jrue has had two games of 30 plus points and 13 plus assists. That is pretty impressive assists totals, considering the way the Sixers offense is.  At least we have Jrue.

Here are some numbers on the top PG’s…

Name                   PPG                  ASSISTS            FIELD GOAL %             3-Ball %       TO’s

HOLIDAY           19.0                    9.0                     45%                                   35%                4.0

PARKER             19.8                     7.4                     47%                                   39%                2.4

IRVING                23.7                    5.7                     46%                                  39%               3.7

RONDO               13.4                      11.1                    48%                                  24%              3.8

D-WILL               17.0                     7.8                     40%                                   32%               2.7

CP3                       16.6                     9.7                      47%                                  33%                2.2

WESTBROOK  22.7                     8.1                     41%                                   33%               3.5

Sixers Balls: Jrue thinks Evan is the go-to guy..

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I was trying to figure what to write about for the Sixers. I mean, I could go all kinds’ of different ways. I could have written about how shitty they have looked for about month now. I could have even written about how Bynum has moved the speed up to “5 mph” on the treadmill. I was going to hit all those topics until I saw this article on how Turner deals with the pressure of being the number 2 overall pick.

I also saw a quote on how Jrue thinks that Turner is the go-to guy. Yes, he actually said that, though maybe he just feels bad for Turner. Here is Jrue’s quote courtesy of James Herbert of SBNation.com.

I think when it comes down to it, he might be our go-to guy. We know what he’s done in college, we know his resume, we know he can score. Right now, I’m just kind of holding that title until Evan comes around.

Could he be right? I know I hope that Jrue’s right. I might be the only one that actually thinks that Evan can be a go-to guy other than Jrue. The quote might be motivation or a little pat on the back for Evan who has struggled mightily in the past 12 games or so.

I have written before on how Turner just needed more time on the floor to see what he could bring to the table. He basically needed more consistent minutes and he is finally getting them this year. Overall even with his struggles of late he has had a solid season so far.

When look at it this way, most number 2 overall picks come into the league anticipating being an impact player. Turner first two years in the league was the complete opposite. He was asked to come off the bench, play backup-PG and to play off the ball. Things that he never had to do before at any level he played at.

He had to learn a new way of playing the game. This year is the first year he has been given the freedom to be him. We have seen some good and bad. He still struggles at times with his own consistencies, being too hard on his self, not knowing when to stay aggressive or setting the pace offensively and settling for jumpers.

Turner’s NBA journey really is just beginning. Will Turner turn into the go-to guy Jrue thinks he can be? Maybe or maybe not. The one thing that is sure is that when Turner and Holiday are both playing well usually ends up in a “W” for the Sixers. Fingers crossed..

Edited by    Brian Lutz       @Lutzie1087

Sixers Balls… Steve Nash thinks Holiday is an All-Star and I concur.. His competition..

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I see that the Sixers are getting some reaction from “La-La Land” after they won for the first time since Iggy’s buzzer beater back 2009. You have Kobe saying, “We are old as shit”. Yes Kobe, you guys are playboy. He was answering a question about the lack of energy they had against the Sixers.

Then you had Steve Nash giving Holiday some love.  Nash said…

“Obviously they’re a different team with him. We beat them at their place by 20 without him,” Nash said (the margin was actually 13 points in the December meeting, 111-98). “I think he gives them obviously a very talented players but he also makes guys around him better.  He makes it more difficult for you to guard [Evan] Turner[Jason] Richardson and the other guys on the perimeter

He’s a terrific player,” Nash said.  “He’s an All-Star this year” via LATimes.com

Damn right he is. Jrue is averaging 18.9 points (5th in the league for point guards, 2nd in the East) and 8.9 assists (3rd overall) for the Sixers. He is shooting 45% from the field (7th in the NBA for point guards) and is shooting 35% from downtown (25th for PG’s). And for you “SABR” peeps he is ranked 11th overall for point guard’s (5th in the East) at 18.80 PER.

Who is Holiday’s competition? At least you can count out D-Rose. I would say Rondo, D-Will, Irving, and Jennings. Well, D-Will’s reputation seems to be major question of late after Avery Johnson got fired. Some people are blaming him. He was also rumored to be a big reason why Jerry Sloan stepped down out in Utah. D-Will the coach killer?

Rondo is still doing his thing even though the Celtics are struggling. He is leading the league in assists with 11.6 a game. Rondo also has posted a triple-double and two 20 assists games this year. Brandon Jennings is having a solid season and has the Bucks (16-13) 6th in the East. He is averaging a career high in assists with 5.8 a game. Kyrie is a stud and is playing at a high-level, though it has not translated into wins because his supporting cast sucks.

Does Holiday get in? I think he does. The Sixers went o-4 when Jrue was out of the lineup and offense was simply not the same. If Jrue wanted to average 25 a game, he easily could.

So how many PG’s will make it? There was 3 PG’s on last year’s All-Star roster. There was 2 PG’s that made in 2011 and 3 made it 2010.  Here some numbers of his competition…

Name                   PPG                  ASSISTS            FIELD GOAL %             3-Ball %       TO’s

HOLIDAY            18.9                    8.9                     45%                                  35%                3.7

JENNINGS         17.6                     5.8                     39%                                  34%                2.4

IRVING                22.7                    5.6                     46%                                  39%               3.7

RONDO               13.1                      11.3                    49%                                  30%              3.7

D-WILL               16.3                     7.5                      39%                                 30%               2.8

Putting Some Sixers Balls On The Christmas Tree…Live by the “J”, Die by the “J’..

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I figured to get out one more post before Christmas.  I figured hanging some Sixers Balls on the tree would be nice. Lets begin; I keep hearing people talk about the long-two’s the Sixers take. The new guys that the Sixers brought in J-Rich/Wright/Young are all jump shooters. What do you expect? This team was built for Bynum that’s the issue. Having Bynum controlling the paint and giving the jumper shooters open looks, while having Jrue/Evan creating. Of course I would like to see them get to line more. BUT with this team its not going to happen.  Live by the “J”, Die by the “J’..

Even Lavoy Allen is mostly a pick and pop guy. We all know how much Hawes loves his jumper. Is it that when the Sixers do take it to the rim they don’t get calls? Not really. It would help to have the “star” calls on their side. You know the calls when the ref waits to see if they make the basket and if they don’t, then they make the call. Bynum would help with this factor.   BUT that is not the answer they just don’t attack the rim enough.

Their loss to the Nets (95-92) was just an example of the Sixers not getting to the line; the Sixers went 8-10 from the charity strip and the Nets went 21-30. Holiday said it best after the loss…

 ‘They beat us at the free-throw line. We beat them everywhere else. It kind of hurt us.’

Yes, it does Jrue. The Sixers are only averaging 18.3 free throws a game. That ranks them 29th in the league. The three best are Holiday, Turner and Thad at getting to the line. It’s nothing to brag about either. Jrue is averaging 3.4 attempts a game, Evan 2.9 and Thad 3.0.  Just for some comparisons here are the top 5 players free-throw attempts a game..

Dwight  10.0

Harden  10.0

Durant   9.2

Kobe        8.5

Melo        7.6

It gets a little worse. The Sixers, Hawks and the Magic are the only teams that don’t have a player attempting at least 4 foul shots a game. Obviously, you would think that the Sixers are attempting a ton of three balls. Nope, they are averaging 18.3 a game, which ranks them 23rd. So what does that equal? Mid-range jumpers and long-two’s.

Well, Happy Holidays!!

Editing…. Brandon Bramanti   @fawkingpawsy

Sixers Balls..Turner and Holiday equally as important. CoffeeTopia, Hmmm…

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I just arrived at work this morning and I was sipping on 24oz coffee from Wawa, 100% Columbian to be exact. I love me some Columbian. One of my fellow co-workers come strolling in and said, ” How about them Sixers?!” I respond with “Yes, I know. They got their asses handed to them. They got flat-out exposed.” We go on talking about the game and how we both can’t stand Spencer Hawes.

Then my co-worker started telling me how the Sixers post game crew was saying when Turner plays well it doesn’t translate into a “W”. That the Sixers win when Turner doesn’t play well. I did not watch the post game show. I shut off the Sixers with about 30 seconds left the game after watching their shit show.

Right away I started to defend my “Man-Crush”.  The Sixers don’t necessary play well, when Evan does? That’s horse shit. How dare they come at my homie like that?! I did think my co-worker was screwing with me because he is known to do that. He said he was not lying. So after cursing and yelling about this a little more I decide to check it out myself.

I figured 17 points was a good number to judge by, when Turner scores more than 17 points the Sixers are 6-4. In those six wins he has 4 double-double’s and in the 4 loss he has 1 double-double. Two of those losses are without Holiday playing. I dropped the number to 16 points for last season’s totals. We all know about ET’s struggles last year. When Evan scored more than 16 points the Sixers were 6-5.

Listen, I know that everything about this team starts with Holiday. The evidence is clear in the past 4 games if you needed evidence at all. BUT if you took away Turner in the last 4 games you would likely see the same result. Holiday is the better player but I truly believe that they are equally as important to this team.

They are the only two that can create offense for themselves and for others. Nick Young can create offense for himself but passing forget about it. Here are some numbers:

Turner’s numbers

In Wins 12 36.6 .476 8.0 4.1 0.4 0.4 2.8 16.8
In Losses 14 35.3 .411 5.9 4.2 0.2 1.1 2.4 13.7

Jrue’s numbers

In Wins 12 39.5 .465 4.3 9.8 0.7 1.6 2.8 19.0
In Losses 10 37.2 .434 3.4 7.9 0.1 1.3 2.5 17.6

There is a very good chance that we will never know what the combination of Holiday, Turner and Bynum could have done. I know I said that I would not bring up Bynum’s name but just for this post. That’s it.

This is Holiday’s and Evans’s team. They are the future and their games complement each other very well. They both can create for others and themselves and both bring toughness to this team. Like I said before, if Turner missed these last 4 games the Sixers would likely be in the same spot, especially with this front-court, bench and pick-roll defense.

CoffeeTopia. Yesss!!

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Sixers Balls..The Good, The Bad, The Ugly…

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I am telling you right now I refuse to bring up the name of the one they call the “Bowler”. I refuse to say it until he actually plays, if ever. I know that the “Bowler” said if he gets good news on Dec 20th he will likely play. Whatever..That’s how I feel about that.

I have decided to give a little break down of the season so far.  I figured to go with “The Good, The Bad and The Ugly”. Let’s begin

The Good…

Back-court

 Jrue makes this team go. It’s as simple as that. Jrue is having a breakout season he is leading the Sixers in scoring (18.4), assists (8.9), free-throw attempts (79) and minutes. He is also fifth in the NBA in minutes per game (38.5).  Without Jrue this team would likely be a lottery team.

After struggling through the first couple of weeks of the season, Turner has finally found that consistency that we all have been looking for. Ummm, he is actually leading the team in three-point shooting at 44%. Yes, I said that right. As Zumoff would say, “Turnerville’s”.. I love the toughness that Turner and Jrue bring to this team. They are looking like a back-court the Sixers could build around. J-Rich has struggled some of late,but overall he has been solid. The dude still can knock down a jumper.

I am putting Thad here because he doesn’t deserve to be in that front-court mess. You have to love Thad. You know what you are getting out of him every single night. All heart and hustle. Plus, he is averaging a career high at 7.3 rebounds per game. I could write about Thad all day so let me stop right now.

The Bad…

Bench

This team barely gets anything from its bench. “Swaggy P” has not had that much “Swag” at all this year. Young has been mostly inconsistent with his play only averaging 9.3 ppg and shooting 38% from the field and 32% from down-town. Dorell Wright teased us in the preseason with his play. He has been a disappointment. He is shooting 32% from the field and is only averaging 6.8 ppg. By the way, the Sixers are a minus 91 when Wright is on the court. Ouch..

Hawes will have a one decent game every once in awhile. Kwame is being well, Kwame. He did have one good game though. Just saying… You will see Hawes and Kwame again. Every time Wayns gets into a game he is like screw it, let’s see how many shots I can “jack” in under minute. He does do a good job of that though.

The Sixers averaged 38.8 ppg last season which ranked them 4th in the league. This year they are ranked 24th in league in bench scoring at 26.6 points a game.

The Ugly..

Front-Court

Do you remember that game against Charlotte?  I know I do. The Sixers front court (Brown, Lavoy, Hawes) got man-handled by Bismack Biyombo. Who? Exactly.. Lavoy (5.2 rebounds in 23.5 minutes a game) has had his moments. His defense has been solid as well at times. I like Lavoy but he is just not consistent enough. He is a backup to me. Hawes (5.7 rebounds in 21.6 minutes a game) is a decent backup. I am trying to be nice here. He is a decent high-post player. When he tries to go into the low-post forget it. He gets pushed around like a 10 year-old. The dude also needs to cut his hair. He looks like he is straight-out of a 70′s porno flick, “Debbie Does Dallas”. Just saying..

I guess you can say that Kwame (2.6 rebounds in 12 minutes a game) has helped in a game or two. I mean, he did have a nice effect in the Dallas game. He did post 6 points and 8 rebounds in just 16 minutes. I apologies for that last sentence, it’s late as I am writing this. Forgive me. All I ask of the Sixers is to NEVER throw the ball into the post to him. EVER.

It’s pretty amazing that the Sixers record is over .500 with this bench and front-court.  You can thank Holiday, Thad and Turner for that..

Contributor for editing Brian Lockett  @block_TLP