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Posts Tagged ‘Philadelphia Seventy-Sixers’

Your failure can't hide behind Kwame forever.

Your failure can't hide behind Kwame forever.

Former Wizards coach Eddie Jordan wants to make it clear, in case there was any doubt: He is interested in the vacant head coaching position in Philly. Nevermind that the 76ers haven’t contacted him. He wants the job. He might be saying he wants it because he thinks it’s the right fit. He might be saying it to send the message to Sacto that they are his very last option. He might just need to get paid. It doesn’t matter. Philly will consider him because, and I don’t mean this as a compliment, there isn’t anyone better.

There are five head coaches in the NBA: Phil Jackson, Gregg Popovich, Jerry Sloan, System Coach (that includes you, LB), and Everyone Else (that includes you, MC). The system coaches are those guys that can generate success if the right players are present to run their plays. Everyone else is everyone else. Eddie Jordan is somewhere between the latter two categories. He will not make a good team terrible any more than he will make it great. Philadelphia was a totally mediocre .500 team this season. Jordan should have no trouble keeping them exactly that good.

A year removed from the game, Jordan and countless other Flip Saunders are forgiven for their flaws and granted new assignments. The results are usually about the same as they were at the last location, down to the eventual firing. Coach of the Philadelphia 76ers today. 86ed by Philly tomorrow. This year we saw the unsuccessful returns of Terry Porter, Scott Skiles, PJ Carlesimo, and Rick Carlisle (he wasn’t any better than his predecessor either). Does Eddie Jordan know something I don’t know, or is he just a glutton for punishment?

Where are the next wave of heady players-turned-coaches? Is Nate McMillan it? After that, is Michael Curry as good as it gets? Until a few more pop up, Eddie Jordans will be granted reprieve every time another Jim O’Brien pulls a Maurice Cheeks. How bad is it? Someone even tried to lure Rick Pitino back!

Sloan, Pop, and Phil are all on their last coaching legs. When they are gone, will great coaching go with them? And if great coaching becomes a thing of the past, how long before head coaches are? Watching the way Chauncey boxes out George Karl during timeouts, I wonder if maybe the job is a figurehead position already.

The prevailing facial expression of mediocre coaches everywhere.

The prevailing facial expression of mediocre coaches everywhere.

Posted by BA Brokeass

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Eastern Conference semi-finals:  Act like you know.  Eh, just act like you care.

(1) CLEVELAND CAVALIERS VS. (4) ATLANTA HAWKS

Nope. Too easy.

Nope. Too easy.

BROKEASS: Will this series even be televised?

DUBBS:  Everything Lebron does is televised.  He’s brushing his teeth on ESPN 12 right now.  In theory, the Hawks should match up well with the Cavs.  But this isn’t a theory class.  The Hawks first round series was uglier than Delonte West.  They are the type of team that can show up and take Boston to seven (like last season).  And they’re the type of team that can not show up and get taken to seven by Miami (this season).  If they pull their shit together, they have the talent to push the Cavs to seven.  But they could also lose in four.  Who knows which Atlanta team will show up?

BROKEASS: When we talk about teams that CAN win, it’s usually because they DON’T win. Nobody talks about Cleveland’s potential. We talk about Cleveland winning. And that’s exactly what we will be talking about during and after this series. Any Detroit Pistons can make it to the Playoffs, the second round is for contenders. Unfortunately, the Eastern Conference didn’t have enough of those teams, so the Hawks will be faking it for the cameras.

DUBBS: Well, at least we got Atlanta.  If Miami had won, all we’d hear about for the next week would be Lebron and Wade, Wade and Lebron.  What good friends and great competitors they are.  How they hang out together in the off-season and curl each other’s hair and drink miso soup out of each other’s foot-baths and have swordfights in the bathroom.  And the Cavs would have obliterated the Heat.  This series has the potential to be watchable.  Whoops, there’s that word again.

BROKEASS: I like the Hawks but those wayward souls make me uncomfortable.  Atlanta has no leader. Surprisingly, Josh Smith’s tantrums haven’t unified the team the way he expected. Lebron isn’t just the best player on his team, he is also the general they follow into battle. He takes all the guesswork out of the game, freeing a guy like Delonte up to do what he does best: Score the ball and look hideous (second Ugly Delonte joke, if you’re keeping score). Atlanta has guys that can score the ball – Six guys averaged in double figures. And guys that look hideous – I bet on Marvin Williams to win the Kentucky Derby (first Ugly Marvin joke, if you’re keeping score). But no one who takes care of all the other stuff that goes into winning. If scoring the ball and looking hideous was the perfect recipe for success, I’d be lacing up my Air Van Exels right now. But I ain’t. I wear $20 Starburys. Unrelated to winning.

DUBBS:  Atlanta might be motivated.  Joe Johnson needs to prove to people he’s just sleepy-looking and not actually asleep.  Josh Smith needs to prove he can hit that stupid between-the-legs dunk he missed so badly against the Heat.  And Mike Bibby needs to prove to Henry Bibby that he is worthy of his love.

BROKEASS: Newsflash, Mike Bibby: You’re not. Nobody is proving anything in this series, other than that time can move very slowly.

DUBBS: I’m gonna take a leap of faith and say Atlanta in 4.  Lebron is getting injured in Game One.  Shelden Williams is gonna do a run-in from the locker-room and take Lebron out with a chair while the referees are distracted.  Jim Ross will be apoplectic:  “Oh my god, it’s The Landlord, Shelden Williams!  He’s supposed to be on the Sacramento Kings!  He fooled us all!  The Landlord!”  And Shelden Williams will walk back to the locker-room with a smug look on his face and the Intercontinental Title Belt held aloft above his head.

BROKEASS: Just what the NBA needs – A Shelden Williams heel turn. Clearly the heel turn will be Lebron ripping off his Cavs jersey mid-series and joining the Knicks. I can already see Spike Lee cackling at confused fans on the Jumbotron. Just kidding – Boobie Gibson would be inconsolable. Seriously, Cleveland will win because this is basketball and the Hawks aren’t very good at it. Cavs sweep.

DUBBS:  I’m gonna go ahead and climb out on the really thin limb of this really tall tree during a windstorm and predict that Atlanta captures some of last year’s playoff magic and pushes the Cavs a bit.  Cavs in 7.

BROKEASS: If this series goes 7 I will gouge out my own eyes. The NBA: Where “Blindness” Happens.

(2) BOSTON CELTICS VS. (3) ORLANDO MAGIC

Basketball skills do not exist in this Dojo!

"I just wanna dance but the fat man in the turtleneck keeps shouting at me!"


DUBBS:  Can both of these teams lose?  That would be my preference.  I really like Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and Rondo.  But my hatred for Kendrick Perkins, Eddie House and the bench version of KG is so intense that it’s difficult for me to root for the Celtics.  On the other hand, I’ve made my feelings on the Magic clear.  They are powder puffs.  They should be embarrassed by their play against Philly.  I won’t root for them until they get some tough guys down there to play actual playoff basketball.  Where’s Charles Oakley when you need him?

BROKEASS: Oak’s working the door at Jordan’s Cinco de Mayo tapas party. The Magic could get him for a Manwich and some dignity. Lifetime contract. Boston vs. Orlando: First team to four losses gets to go home. It’s hard to bet against Boston, because this unit remains undefeated in a playoff series. But it’s hard to bet on Boston, because they haven’t shown any signs of being that good this Playoffs. It’s hard to bet on Orlando, because they are so…Orlando. And it’s hard to bet against Orlando, because, well, Dwight should be unstoppable. Though for every “Dwight should be unstoppable,” uttered before, there is a “Dwight should’ve been unstoppable,” to be mentioned after.

DUBBS:  Exactly. With KG out, Dwight should dominate every game of this series.  But you know he’s not going to.  He just doesn’t seem to be able to take a series over like that.  Having said that, this is where the thinness of the Celtics frontcourt with both KG and Leon Powe out is really going to kill them.  Will Kendrick Perkins foul out of every game before the National Anthem is sung?  They can’t slide Big Baby over and Scalabrine can’t cover Dwight.  The weight of the world truly rests on Kendrick Perkins’ shoulders in this series.  So at least the look on his face will finally match up.

BROKEASS: Boston’s thinness will be an issue. And so will its thickness. Big Baby can’t cover Rashard on the wings or Hedo up top. Scalabrine is the basketball equivalent to a designated hitter. The Magic frontcourt is a nightmare for healthy opponents, and the injury-depleted Celtics are struggling with even mediocre bigs. Rafer Alston is not the perfect substitute for Jameer Nelson ever, but he should have an easier time skipping to his Lou against Rondo than the stout, inflexible Andre Miller, leading to more drop offs for Dwight and kick-outs for the 3-ballers.

DUBBS:  I’m tired of hearing about Jameer Nelson. People talk about it like if he were healthy, the Magic would win 8 championships in a row.  Rafer might not be a perfect substitute for Jameer Nelson but Jameer is not a perfect substitute for an actual point guard.  Let him go play NBA Jam at the arcade with Nate Robinson.  I’ll up his allowance.  Still, Rondo is going to eat Rafer Alston alive.  By the end of this series, Rafer is going to be talking about retiring (again) and fighting Sam Mitchell (again).  Also, um, JJ REDICK IS STARTING!!!!  JJ Redick wouldn’t make the Celtics practice squad.

BROKEASS: JJ only starts until Courtney Lee gets home from allergy camp, or wherever the fuck they sent his sinuses. Wow. The Magic are in trouble. But so are the Celtics. This is the first series I can think of where absolutely no one can guard anyone else. I guess it comes down to a battle of masterful coaches. Anybody know where we can find any masterful coaches? Between having homes in Boston and Orlando and doing nothing in the first round, Doc Rivers should at least be well-rested. So that’s an advantage.

DUBBS: Courtney Lee’s coming back?  Phew.  Championship saved.  Stan Van Gundy will show Doc Rivers the real meaning of flop sweat.  It comes down to this:  If Orlando allows a team like Philly to hang around without delivering the knockout blow until it’s almost too late, how will they will deal with a team that fights tooth and nail for every game?  That’s what’s so impressive about Boston.  They never stop fighting.  They never give up. Boston won’t give Orlando this series.  Orlando will have to take it. And I don’t think they have the stuff to do that.  Celtics in 6.

BROKEASS: And yet the Celts had to settle for a split decision victory over the Bulls, a team that wasn’t even strong enough to wrestle the 6 seed from Philly while the 76ers were in an end-of-the-season coma. Neither team proved themselves deserving of more basketball: Orlando lacks the toughness and Boston lacks the muscle. If this was single elimination I’d pick Boston for their heart. Over a series, I think Orlando’s size will wear on them.  Magic in 6.

DUBBS:  Fans of the Magic would love that prediction.  Too bad they don’t exist.


Will Dwight Howard finally stop turning the other cheek?
Will Eddie House finally realize that hitting an open three-pointer doesn’t make you a tough guy? Will the Cavs bench finally realize they don’t get to follow Lebron to the Knicks? Will Kevin Garnett finally see video of his behavior on the bench and die of shame? Will Boobie Gibson finally realize that’s a birthmark on Delonte West’s face – not grape jelly?  Will Eddie House’s son finally realize his dad is a bit player in the NBA and not the hero he believes him to be?  Will Mo Williams finally realize its not an all-star slight if you’re not an all-star? Will Marvin Williams finally get braces to correct his wicked overbite? Will Stephon finally realize the Celtics organization is conspiring to hold him back?  Will Acie Law IV finally realize he’s the only Acie Law that matters? Will Mikki Moore finally realize he’s Busta Rhymes’ skeleton?  Will Marcin Gortat finally get the joke about how many Polish guys it takes to screw in a lightbulb? Will Flip Murray finally battle Flip Saunders in a duel to the death, winner gets to be an adult called Flip? Will Brian Scalabrine finally realize he’s Michael Rapaport?   Will Jeremy Richardson finally realize I don’t know who he is?  Will Mike Bibby finally realize he’s Eddie House’s brother-in-law and force his sister to get a divorce?  Will Doc Rivers finally realize he’s not a licensed medical practitioner? Will Stan Van Gundy’s moustache finally explode?  Will Kendrick Perkins finally figure out who farted?  Check back throughout the Playoffs for the answers to these questions – and more!

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Like a bad doggy, Reggie Evans humps legs when he gets excited.

Anytime Reggie Evans and Donyell Marshall are happy, I'm unhappy.

You simply don’t blow eighteen-point home-court leads, like Orlando did in Game 1 against Philly, and go on to win championships. A real coach wouldn’t let that happen. Stan Van Gundy has become every bit the distraction of Larry Brown, without the smarts or resume. If LB had been coaching the Magic on Sunday, crew members would still be cleaning up chunks of his exploded head. With SVG, it’s just the usual pool of flop sweat. The ‘Yoffs may have just begun, but the Magic are already finished.

All hating on the mentally-weak aside, Andre Iguodala’s game-winner was the highlight of the weekend. Watch Iggy hop:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

It looks like they’re dancing. Get that Turkish gypsy step outta here, Hedo! Iggy came to stomp the yard!

Posted by BA Brokeass

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Aaron Brooks stays well-fed.

Aaron Brooks stays well-fed.

Rockets 108, Blazers 81: When I said Aaron Brooks was gonna eat, I was thinking a light meal. Y’know, soup, salad, maybe some breadsticks. But Aaron set up an all-you-can-eat buffet in the Rose Garden, going for 27 points, 7 assists and 4 rebounds as the Rockets destroyed the Blazers in Portland. Yao shot a perfect 9 for 9, scoring all 24 of his points in the first half as the Rockets came strong out of the gate. This was clearly a case of one team being ready and the other… not so much. I’m sure the Blazers will find their legs.

Hawks 90, Heat 64: This one surprised me. The Hawks were motivated. When’s the last time that happened? Last year’s playoffs, I guess. Atlanta held D-Wade to 19 points. I don’t see that happening again. If it does, this series is over. On another note, I take Josh Smith’s performance from the free thow line (5-6) as a personal insult. Josh Smith was on my fantasy team this season and was a disaster from the free throw line – lots of 1 for 7 performances.

Sixers 100, Magic 98: The Magic had something to prove in this game and they failed to do it. They gave up an eighteen-point lead at home to a crappy Sixers squad. I’m still sure the Magic will win this series, but they aren’t going anywhere this year, as usual. Magic = softbatch.

Nuggets 113, Hornets 84: Chauncey Billups had 36 points, hitting a career playoff high 8 three-pointers and still finding time to drop 8 dimes. Ouch. Meanwhile…

Cavs 102, Pistons 84: Lebron James abused Tayshaun Prince (what else is new?) for 38, 8 and 8 while Tay responded with 4 , 2 and 2. No single player can really hope to stop Lebron but it’s been clear for a while now that LBJ is inside Tayshaun’s head. The one ray of hope for the Pistons in this game: Stuckey scored 20 and played fairly well. Stuckey has to play well for this series to be worth anything to the Pistons.

Bulls 105, Celtics 103: Derrick Rose blew up for 36 points and 11 assists as the Bulls stunned the Celtics in OT. As predicted, the Bulls have come to play. But I don’t think the Celtics are in trouble. Yet. Rajon Rondo put in a good one with 29 points, 7 assists and 9 rebounds.

Mavs 105, Spurs 97: The Mavs were down 11 after the first quarter, but came back to win their first road playoff game in three years. Tim Duncan and Tony Parker played well. BUT THERE’S NOBODY ELSE!! Big win for the Mavs.

Lakers 113, Jazz 100: The Lakers were ready to go. No surprise there. The Jazz’ advantage at point guard was clear – Deron Williams had 17 assists – but it didn’t matter. Trevor Ariza had 21 for the Purp-and-Gold. And Kobe did this:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Bulls-Celtics and Mavs-Spurs get their game 2 on tonight.

Posted by LA Dubbs

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Our picks are in, complete with expert analysis! Don’t blame us when your bookie comes to collect.

(1) CLEVELAND CAVALIERS VS. (8) DETROIT PISTONS

nba_ben_sheed_580

"Scattered pictures, of the smiles we left behind, smiles we gave to one another, for the way we were."

Let’s get this one out of the way.

DUBBS: Cavs in 4. The Cavs are really hard to beat at home. I see the Cavs winning the first two at home, with at least the second game being a close one. After going down 0-2, the Pistons will fold. Goodbye Iverson. Bye-bye Sheed. Hello… Paul Millsap?

BROKEASS: I’m going with the Cavs in 3. No, seriously, Lebron will carve the Pistons up just like he did the last two times these teams faced off in the playoffs. He’ll average 40 in the Cleveland games before the “BJ Armstrong All-Stars” humiliate the Pistons at the Palace. On second thought, maybe the Cavs will win in 3. Either way, at the end of Sheed’s last game as a Piston, he’ll be sure to give Bronny a long, heartfelt embrace.

DUBBS: Yeah, Sheed’s gotta pass that torch from five years ago. So we both have Sheed gone after this year, but you have him leaving during the series. Where do you see Sheed going? I think both he and Iverson should head to Charlotte and reunite with LB.

BROKEASS: I’m not sure Sheed won’t retire, but if he signs a new deal Charlotte would be a wise decision. Old stomping grounds, old coach, young nucleus. And he could do almost every bit for Emeka Okafor what he did for Ben Wallace. As for Iverson, I don’t give a shit. Stick the “A-I” between “J” and “L” for all I care.

DUBBS: Yeah, Sheed could mentor Okafor like he does Dwight Howard. Except they’d actually be on the same team, making it, y’know, appropriate. And Iverson still has college eligibility, right? He should enroll at Florida International University and play for Isiah. Zeke could teach him how to run the point.

(2) BOSTON CELTICS VS. (7) CHICAGO BULLS

celtics-bulls-deng-shoots-over-pierce

Paul Pierce feels the music. Ty Thomas feels it move.

BROKEASS: I like Chicago to give Boston a hard time in this series. Especially if KG is inactive. The Bulls can match the defensive intensity of these Celts and that will result in some tough-fought games. Maybe even a tough-fought fight. I’ve got the Celtics in 6.

DUBBS: Agreed, Celtics in 6. I like Chicago right now. If they had made it to the 6 seed, I would pick them to upset Orlando. Derrick Rose is coming into his own and he’ll make a mark in this series. Ty Thomas and Noah have been playing well. And who’s gonna guard John Salmons?!?! But I think the Celtics will be super-motivated without KG. Pierce is gonna go off.

BROKEASS: I never thought I would read myself write this, but I think Chicago will suffer for the absence of Luol Deng. They need a calming presence that D-Rose does not yet provide. This will no doubt be his coming-out party as an individual, but this Rose is not yet fully in bloom when it comes to running a team. Ugh, did I just type that? Gag me with a penis. Who dominates the Battle of Connecticut: Gordon or Allen?

DUBBS: Allen, most definitely. He’s had a resurgent year, after recovering from last season’s ankle injuries. He’ll be better than Gordon. And I agree with you about the calming presence of Lu Deng. I’ve fallen asleep many a time watching his boring ass play ball. He’s like Tayshaun Prince without all the flash.

BROKEASS: “Luuuuuuuuu Deng will help you get your ZZZZZZZZ’s.”

(3) ORLANDO MAGIC VS. (6) PHILADELPHIA SEVENTY-SIXERS

Sixers smell defeat.

The Sixers smell defeat.

DUBBS: I don’t believe in Orlando. They are sweetmeat. Hedo is injured, Rafer Alston is not Jameer Nelson, and Dwight Howard is not the dominant offensive player he should be. Teams are too often able to contain him on that end of the floor. Having said that, I don’t see the Sixers posing much of a threat. They just aren’t good. And they have gotten worse lately. D-Ho should feast inside. Orlando in 5.

BROKEASS: Philly will have the advantage at guards, but that won’t matter. Two Andres don’t equal one Dwight. I’m taking Orlando in 4. Are we done talking about this unwatchable series yet?

DUBBS: Yes. The only point of interest in this series is whether Stan Van Gundy will wear a mock turtleneck every single game. SVG – Get you some breathable fabrics and live a little, son!

(4) ATLANTA HAWKS VS. (5) MIAMI HEAT

This is the matchup the Hawks should be concerned with.

This is the tandem the Hawks should be worried about.

BROKEASS: The top 3 in the East should’ve received First Round byes. This is the only series that matters. On paper I have to take the Hawks, but this series seems more likely to come down to these three intangibles: 1) Will D-Wade be infallible; 2) Will the referees treat D-Wade like he’s infallible; and 3) Will the Hawks self-destruct? I predict the series to be unpredictable, but am choosing Atlanta in 7.

DUBBS: Yeah, this is the one that’s up for grabs. Atlanta is a better team than Miami. But Dwyane Wade has been just disgusting. Atlanta has a tendency to fall apart a bit at times. And a Heat win would set up Lebron-Wade for Round 2. So, apologies to the always-overlooked Joe Johnson and the always-undereducated Josh Smith, but I’m picking Miami in 7.

BROKEASS: It is hard to bet against Dwyane if it comes down to Game 7. But I’m betting on an Atlanta team that thrives at home and feels like they let an upset slip away last year in Boston. Miami has too little else besides Wade. Mario Chalmers, you ain’t in Kansas anymore. Mike Bibby has too much playoff experience and too many tattoos to read. If JO somehow comes alive, that’s a different story, but we all know in this world, when you’re dead you stay dead.

DUBBS: Too little else besides Wade? Um… hello? Mike ‘Be Easy” Beasley? Jo-el “son of Jor-el, brother of Kal-el” Anthony? AKA The Gazelle? Udonis “Udonis Haslem” Haslem? And JO is a soldier. He lives to come up short in moments like this. No, it’s all on Wade. If Atlanta can keep Wade under 30 for a game or two, they’ll win. But I don’t think they can do it.

That’s all for the East. Western Conference First Round picks coming up.

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