Monday, December 07, 2009

3 Questions About the Sixers

The Sixers haven't performed to expectations so far this season. With about a forth of the season behind them, Philly is a miserable 5-15, 14th in the East, only better than the New Jersey Nets. Now they've brought back former Sixer Allen Iverson, but is this team even a playoff team with him? Let's address what's wrong with this team.

1. Uhhh, who plays defense?

This Sixer team is not a good enough defensive team to win consistently (could say the same about their offense, but their D is awful). When you think of the Sixers, which current player do you think of for any of his defensive attributes? The only one I think is Samuel Dalembert and his ability to block shots. While that does some things for the team, really that's the only defensive skill that sticks out about their whole roster (OK, since he gets 2.05 steals a game right now, Andre Iguodala gets a mention). They are a soft, weak team on defense.

2. Who is the guy who takes the last shot?

With Iverson now in the mix, that question doesn't have a clear answer. It will probably change from game to game. When Iverson is scoring with ease and has it going, it will be him. When Iguodala is the main scorer, it will be him. What will be interesting to watch is when both guys are off, though it will only be occasional, we'll see who takes the shot. Eddie Jordan will have to mull that over, but both guys are solid players in the clutch.

3. Is this the right way for Philly to go?

From a managerial standpoint, the Iverson move defined some goals for the team this season. Obviously, they want to fill seats, but this move shows that the Sixers want to start putting some wins on the board now. I know it's early and tanking is wrong, but I wouldn't blame the Sixers for doing it a bit with the team they've got. Maybe injuries have hurt them a bit, the new system is tough for them, but even I expected more so far. A semi-rebuilding direction might be the right way for the future, but hey, they see a team that can maybe make the second round here. Sixer fans have to learn to be content with that for now.

This team could find a better swagger with Iverson though. If the AI signing works perfectly, the Sixers will find a way into the 5-8 area in the East.

Tonight at 7 PM Eastern, the Iverson journey begins. Best case scenario, it brings fire to this team that carries them back in to the playoffs and out of the early doldrums that has been their season. If it doesn't, the Sixer management may begin to see that more rebuilding may be necessary.