Archive for the ‘Philadelphia 76ers’ Category

In honor of Allen Iverson officially announcing his retirement, someone please finally teach me this move I’ve been trying to learn since sophomore year of high school. It’s been like 15 years and I’m still convinced this move, which was the basis for a commercial plugging his second signature shoe, isn’t actually possible to do without carrying the ball. Willing to pay upwards of $5 to learn.

And as a companion, try to read this prediction in six seconds:

L, L, L, L, W, L, L, L, L, L, L, L, W, L, L, L, L, L, W, W, L, L, L, L, L, L, L, L, W, L, L, L, L, W, L, L, L, W, L, L, L, L, L, L, W, L, L, L, L, L, W, L, L, L, L, W, W, W, L, W, L, L, L, W, L, L, L, L, L, L, L, L, L, L, W, W, L, W, L, W, L, L

An 18-64 season has never gone by so fast. Enjoy it now, Sixers fans, because the real thing is going to take FOREVER.

(via the Sixers’ Vine)

kelly-olynyk-horse-smile

With the dust mostly settled on this offseason’s player movement — and there was a whole lot of it this year — it’s time to take stock of all the fascinating new faces in new places, as well as the more compelling stories of players who will face new challenges while sticking around. Over the course of the next few weeks, Andrew Unterberger will do a team-by-team look at the most interesting players going into next season — one new to the team, and one returning — as we all try to pass the dog days of NBA-less summer, dreaming of hoops-filled months to come. The series kicks off today with the teams in the Atlantic Division: the Celtics, Nets, Knicks, 76ers and Raptors.

BOSTON CELTICS

Most Interesting New Player: Kelly Olynyk

Obviously, the Celtics’ offseason was more about the purge of the old than the welcoming of the new, as the departure of franchise-defining players like Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett was balanced by the dudes in this super-depressing picture – hardly an even reconciliation of the team’s ledger in any respect. It’s unlikely that any of the guys received by the Celtics in their mega-blockbuster deal with Brooklyn will be of terrible consequence for the Celtics moving forward, and it wouldn’t be terribly surprising if none of them even ended the season on the C’s roster.

A brutally depressing Boston offseason may have been slightly redeemed, however, with the drafting — well, more so the Summer League play — of Kelly Olynyk. The Gonzaga big man seemed like a minor stretch when Danny Ainge traded with the Mavs to move up in the draft and take him with the 13th pick, but Olynyk made the selection look like a steal with his impressive exhibition play in Orlando, scoring with ease both in the post and from the perimeter, rebounding and passing well, and generally showing a ridiculous feel for the game for a not-even-rookie. Olynyk was one of the stories of the summer’s exhibition season, averaging 18 and 8 on 58 percent shooting, with the name “Dirk” even being invoked on more than one occasion. Suddenly, there was a non-ping-pong-balls-related reason to be excited about the ’14 Celtics.

Of course, the list of Summer League mirages in the NBA is a long and foreboding one — ask Bill Simmons about Kedrick Brown some time (or maybe don’t) — and there’s some legitimate worry about how Olynyk will fare against the size and strength of pro-caliber big men, so it might be prudent to hold off on calling him Canadian Moses right away. Still, after the loss of Pierce and Garnett, Olynyk will undoubtedly be a focus for Celtics fans, hoping that they might have gotten a guy worthy of being included in future Boston Big Threes.

Most Interesting Returning Player: Jeff Green

It’s hard not to go with Rajon Rondo here, since Rondo is never not one of the league’s most interesting players, and will be particularly so next season, coming back from ACL surgery and now all of a sudden being the virtually uncontested Face of the Franchise after spending the last six seasons trying to get out from the Big Three’s shadow. But who knows when Rajon is returning next year, and in the meantime, Jeff Green will be one of the most fascinating case studies in the league, as he gets to be The Guy for the first time in his NBA career.

Lest we forget, Green came alive late last season as a starter for the injury-plagued C’s, averaging over 20 a game (on over 50 percent shooting both from the field and from deep) in 17 starts, and then leading the team in scoring with over 20 a game in their first-round series against the Knicks. And now after six years of overlapping on the depth chart with the likes of Kevin Durant and Paul Pierce, Jeff Green will open the season is Boston as the team’s obvious first scoring option, finally given the chance to be the offensive focal point that other guys have to adjust their games to fit around. He could average 22 a game, push for the All-Star team and solidify himself as a huge key for the team’s future, or he could struggle to score efficiently, serve as an offensive black hole and effectively be the tanking engine for Boston’s 2014 lottery push. Both seem pretty damn plausible at this point.

Either way, this is probably it for Green — after six years of Yeah Buts and Well If Onlys, he basically has no excuse now not to be his awesomest self. If Green disappoints at age 27 on a young team with (eventually, hopefully) one of the league’s best point guards setting him up, he’ll probably never totally live up to expectation. If there’s a bigger make-or-break season for any one player this year, I’m not sure what it is, and I can’t wait to watch to find out which way he goes.

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roy-hibbert-the-big-red-dog

“Roy Hibbert is big as s–.”Nerlens Noel, future scout

Evidence for:

  • He looks like he is in costume.
  • Wearing a Ferrari jacket could be a botched Joey Tribbiani reference.
  • This is in Madrid and maybe it’s Halloween there.
  • Might be cos-playing a bizarre “Dancing with the Stars” fantasy, and who are we to judge?

Evidence against:

  • Kind of just seems like a guy dancing on stage even though he’s not that good at dancing.
  • Really loves Ferrari, which explains why he’d think such a jacket is necessary, even if it’s horribly dated.
  • Who brings costumes on vacations that aren’t to Comic-Con?
  • I’m pretty sure it’s not Halloween in Madrid.

Verdict: Just a guy dancing on knees that were surgically repaired six weeks ago. Too complicated to be a costume.

nick-young-kind-of-hair

Just a day after we found out that Nick Young has a mullet, we now find out whether or not it’s really a mullet. I know that sounds confusing, but some people will call whatever that is a “bump,” or a “patch,” or a “ducktail.” So just for clarification, here is some clarification. From the 700 Level:

Asked what the new ‘do was called, Swaggy got creative.

“It’s the Shaggy P,” he said.

Fellow strange-hair-wearer Spencer Hawes weighed in with a few thoughts of his own.

“It’s the black mullet, the bullet,” Hawes joked.

[...]

We pushed Swaggy for clarification. Is the Shaggy P. really a mullet?

“Kind of,” he said with a smile.

Well that clears up absolutely nothing. It’s not a “bullet” because it’s not a bullet and it’s only “kind of” a mullet. I guess we will just have to call it “the Shaggy P” because rhyming is great and there aren’t really any other options.

I’ll accept “Kanye mullet” or “Billy Ocean head” as well.

nick-young-mullet

Look, I like “808s & Heartbreak” as much as the next guy, but come on. A mullet? In 2013? Even if it’s a fashion mullet, it’s still a mullet and it’s still 2013.

But whatever. If Nick Young says, “It’s time for a Chang” then I guess it’s time for a Chang. It’s the internet and we’re all “Community” fans, so OK. Let’s get on board with this mullet, you guys.

Just kidding. Still a mullet.