On Friday night, in front of a full crowd that was including me, the Sixers struggled against “Lob” Angeles Clippers. They could not muster a run or enough energy to excite themselves or the Wells Fargo Center itself. You would think that Andre Iguodala, who was selected for the All-Star team, would try and prove that he deserves to be called an All-Star. Well, Iguodala showed nothing even close to a valuable player in this game. He had just 12 points, 8 rebounds, and 7 assists. Our men in white (actually red tonight) found themselves up 12 early in the 2nd quarter.
This contest started out with the Clippers not being able to drop a shot, starting out just 5-17 from the field. Then, Mo Williams subbed in and that lead plummeted quickly. As soon as the 1st quarter ended, the game was entirely Clippers basketball. I realized something while watching this game: This Sixers team, who is said to be a “legitimate contender” and is supposedly playing “great” basketball, had no pep in their step. The Sixers’ whole game are forcing turnovers and converting them into fast break points. Yet on fast break, they would just jog up court, with no means of an effort to score a bucket in a favorable situation. The Clippers however, did exactly the opposite. They beat us at our own game tonight. It was said that the Sixers looked tired or bored. Well, what kind of player is tired or bored when they are playing in front of a full crowd, on their home floor, and playing a good Los Angeles Clippers? There is no reason that a team like this, having a day off in between games and coming off of a bad loss at home to the Spurs, should be tired or bored. This is the NBA, go hard or go home!
Another thing was that the brick squad was in town, because every shot, wide open or not, was a flat out BRICK. The Sixers were not even trying to find good shots. They shot 48 minutes worth of outside shots. But, why would this be if they have plays designed to find guys for easy, wide open, dunks or layups? Tonight, I am ashamed to be a Sixers fan. I do not know whether it was just an off night, they simply did not care, or every Sixers woke up on the wrong side of the bed, but this was not Sixer basketball. This was 10-20 games under .500 basketball.
Another thing that makes me want to scream is the lack of made free throws. This killed us against the Nuggets, Nets, and especially the Clippers. Tonight, the Sixers shot 15/23 from the charity stripe. A professional basketball team should be shooting 20/23 or 21/23, not anywhere close to 60%. Jrue Holiday and Lou Williams missed the front and back ends of a pair of free throws late in this game. If they had made them, I would not be as outraged as I am tonight. In the Sixers final possession, they could not even get a shot off. This possession, I considered horribly planned out. This game comes down to blown calls, effort, and free throws. If I were Doug Collins, I would make the Sixers run until 2 in the morning, shoot free throws until 7, and fly to Cleveland for Saturday night’s game against the Cavaliers. One last note, Reggie Evans single handedly out worked, hustled, and offensively out rebounded the Sixers. I personally believe that the Sixers should have won this game by about 3 points. Jrue Holiday turned the ball over way too much and supported by theory that he is not the answer and played awful defense, once again. The Clippers take one away from the Sixers tonight, 78-77, in front of a sold-out crowd. Chris Paul had 24 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists. Andre Iguodala and Elton Brand each had 12 points and Brand had 10 rebounds.