76ers 2019-2020

lovegtm

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Why do we care what players heights are in bare feet anyway?
Gives a common reference point. I suppose the league could have distributed standardized shoes for everyone to wear while measuring, but bare feet is easier by 10000x. Then if you want to know a guy's playing height, just add 1" or whatever.
 

terrynever

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Ben Simmons made a 3 tonight as Embiid begged him to shoot in blowout exhibition win. Score was 79-41 at the time. Stroke looked good. He was unguarded.
 

Reverend

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Ben Simmons’s shooting is one of the more bizarre storylines in the league.

I mean, everyone is treating that three like he’s the team manager with a disability whom the coach put in as some kind of feel good reward but then who actually makes the shot.

Except, it’s a professional basketball player.
 

terrynever

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Ben Simmons’s shooting is one of the more bizarre storylines in the league.

I mean, everyone is treating that three like he’s the team manager with a disability whom the coach put in as some kind of feel good reward but then who actually makes the shot.

Except, it’s a professional basketball player.
Actually, Brett Brown’s response to media was a terse, “He made a shot.” Next question. It was Belichickian.
His teammates were happy for him but would rather talk about defense, which looks like a strength of this team. Matisse Thybulle is already second man off bench, right behind James Ennis. They are great athletes with length. Deflections and steals.
Simmons’ shooting is important only in that he needs to get better. That’s on him. Nothing goes unnoticed in this day and age. But he would rather talk about this team’s defensive makeup, and the idea that the second unit is better than last year. Deeper, too.
 

benhogan

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This team's defense is going to be bonkers ridiculous. So much length and athleticism. When your worst defender is Tobia Harris
Agreed. Insane defensive team.

Tobias is terrible defensively but when you have Embiid and Horford protecting the rim he won't get too exposed. Add in two excellent defenders w/ Simmons & J-Rich...very scary
 

terrynever

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One game in the books and the defense is as advertised. No more picking on JJ Redick. Richardson and Thybulle off the bench behind him are very active defenders with great length.
The offense needs work, which is why they play 82 games before the playoffs begin. Spacing was so good against Boston, Simmons had all kinds of lanes to the hoop. Was that just Boston’s attention to Embiid? Celtics did a nice job on the big center.
Still turning the ball over a lot.
Before last night’s game, Brad Stephens said 76ers are the most talented team he has ever seen. Blowing smoke up their butts. Long season. I expect a tight race for the top three seeds in the East. As it should be.
 

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terrynever

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He said the most talented team he's seen--not 100% sure he meant "ever" or was referring to what he's seen scouting this year.


Either way, you're good.
No, you’re right. It was an interesting comment. Brad taking the high road. Philly has holes that can be exploited and Boston is smart enough to take advantage as the season advances.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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Mentioned this in the Cs game thread but national broadcast said something to the effect that Brett Brown thinks Sixers are bigger and stronger than everyone so they will ideally be playing from the foul line down.

I.e., they are taking basketball back to the 1990s.

Will be interesting to see if they can be efficient enough to make the math work.
 

terrynever

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Mentioned this in the Cs game thread but national broadcast said something to the effect that Brett Brown thinks Sixers are bigger and stronger than everyone so they will ideally be playing from the foul line down.

I.e., they are taking basketball back to the 1990s.

Will be interesting to see if they can be efficient enough to make the math work.
Well, they won’t outshoot anyone.
As a head coach, Brown is more invested in defense. This is the first time where all of his starters can play D. Second unit, too.
Can teams fueled by smothering defense and interior offense win in 2020?
 

128

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Well, they won’t outshoot anyone.
Other than Simmons, all of Philly's starters are good outside shooters, and Simmons is a monster in the lane. They could use more shooting off the bench, but Mike Scott and Furkan will help in that regard.
 

Kliq

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Other than Simmons, all of Philly's starters are good outside shooters, and Simmons is a monster in the lane. They could use more shooting off the bench, but Mike Scott and Furkan will help in that regard.
This isn't true, Embiid is the biggest bricklayer this side of Russell Westbrook and takes way too many of them.
 

Sam Ray Not

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If we're just talking threes, Embiid, Westbrook, and Anthony Davis are all roughly equally bricktastic: (career) Embiid .314, Davis .313, Westbrook .308. (But yeah, Russ takes by far the most heat of the three for being a bricklayer, I guess cos he's a guard).
 

terrynever

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76ers up 62-43 at halftime over Minnesota, which is somehow 3-0 so far. Philly holds a 32-13 edge on the boards. They just keep creating mismatches down low.
Townes is the only effective offensive threat for Minny. SSS: KAT is hitting 52 percent of his threes this season.
Every decade or three, Philly puts together a very talented team that usually falls short of expectations due to sloppy play. This squad may still lead the league in turnovers but the talent is top-notch. It’s a deeper team. The rookie, Matisse Thybulle, is going to be a real pain in the butt off the bench. He jumps passing lanes and ignites the defense.
As talented as Philly looks, it is the defense that might be the real asset, and a difference-maker when the schedule gets tougher.
 

terrynever

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Halfway thru third quarter, KAT and Embiid tangled up and then went to the floor like two wrestlers trying to hip toss each other. Started with Embiid doubling up on KAT with Simmons behind Townes. Simmons stripped the ball and Embiid locks arms with Townes. KAT throws a punch. After lengthy review, Townes is ejected. Embiid leads the cheers. And he is ejected, too.

Joel is not going to last the season. He never does. But he is in great shape. Leaner, more cut. Horford can cover opposing centers for half the game.
 
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the moops

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From the video I cant really see a clean Towns punch. Does look like Embiid got him pretty good once on the ground though. They gotta give Embiid several games I think considering his reaction afterwards. Cant have players acting like that after a fight
 

HomeRunBaker

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76ers management hoped that Horford’s professionalism might rub off on Embiid. Not yet.
After spending these past two seasons with Embiid and Kyrie who would have ever thought Horford would long for his days of sane teammates like Josh Smith and Jordan Crawford.
 

terrynever

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The Athletic just posted an interesting background story on the Embiid-Towns rivalry. Jimmy Butler is a key figure. While playing for the T-wolves, Butler felt Towns was too soft. He turned a private scrimmage into a huge insult to Towns by leading the reserve players to a trouncing of the starters (minus Butler). Then Butler came to Philly and took Embiid under his wing.
On Wednesday night, Towns finally responded after a series of back-ins by Embiid and other physical entanglements.
Horford wasn’t happy with either player after the game. But Al played like he always does, filling in the holes, collecting 16 rebounds, five offensive.
Philly has fielded talented teams before that lacked maturity on the court in crunch time. The entire Wilt vs. Celtics era was based on the premise that Boston would get Wilt off his game. Embiid relishes the challenge. And he has way more talent around him than Wilt ever did.
My question is which of the league’s title contenders have the manpower to combat Philly’s size and strength? Lakers, for sure, with Dwight Howard backing up AD and LeBron.
 

terrynever

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Ben Simmons has a Grade 1 sprain of his right shoulder and will miss 1-3 games, beginning with Friday night in Denver.

76ers have lost two straight and could finish 1-3 on the road trip. Probably a good thing because they could use a little humility after all the preseason hype. Embiid has vowed to never get suspended again. Two games cost him $379,000 in salary.

Other troubling signs: For all the offseason work on his jump shot, Simmons hasn’t made a bucket outside of 12 feet yet. Thybulle seems lost on offense. Tobias Harris is a bit inconsistent for a max contract guy.

There is plenty of good stuff, too. Thybulle’s defense. A longer bench plus solid backup center help for Embiid.
 

bigq

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The 76ers have quietly lost five of their last seven games. All of the losses have been on the road. Prior to that they won five in a row. Maybe they will continue to be a streaky team this year.

They were expected to be very strong defensively however they are just a bit above average in terms of opponents points per game (11th).

They are near the bottom of the league (28th) with 17.1 turnovers per game and they are not getting to the charity stripe at a good rate (23rd) and when they get there they do not shoot well (25th at 72.9%).

They are below league average in terms of 3PA and 3P% which is not surprising given that their starting PG does not have a three point game and literally can barely hit a shot beyond 10 feet from the basket. Surprisingly Embiid is hitting threes at a 41% rate to lead the team which is well above his career 32% rate so he may well regress as the season goes on.

Embiid, ostensibly the team’s best player, has missed 4 of 12 games and the team has gone 2 wins and 2 losses in the games he has missed.

With the SSS and early in the season caveats, I expected the team to be better than they have showed to date. As a Celtics fan it won’t hurt my feelings if they play out the rest of the season at their current 48 win pace however going in I thought they had a good chance of being the best team in the East.

All of this is a long winded way of saying this has been a disappointing start to the season. And going forward the amount of money they have tied up in Embiid, Simmons, Horford and Harris is going to limit their team depth and potentially hamstring the team if the existing core group can not work together effectively. I am interested to see how things play out.
 

terrynever

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Brett Brown said recently that he doesn’t expect this team to mesh until Christmas, at the earliest. It has been ugly so far. The defensive efforts have been uneven. That cannot happen with a team that shoots poorly. So today, on the road in Cleveland, they shot it well and defended.
it’s a long season.
 

HomeRunBaker

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Brett Brown said recently that he doesn’t expect this team to mesh until Christmas, at the earliest. It has been ugly so far. The defensive efforts have been uneven. That cannot happen with a team that shoots poorly. So today, on the road in Cleveland, they shot it well and defended.
it’s a long season.
Such a lame excuse. What was his reasoning to make this silly plea to relieve pressure off himself? Unless there is a roster shakeup they are still going to have the same flaws as they do today. The only change will be that they are no longer on a long road trip.
 

lovegtm

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Such a lame excuse. What was his reasoning to make this silly plea to relieve pressure off himself? Unless there is a roster shakeup they are still going to have the same flaws as they do today. The only change will be that they are no longer on a long road trip.
Yeah this is exactly the preemptive expectation-setting I’d be doing in Brett Brown’s shoes lol. Sucks for him: he didn’t get the best groceries to choose from, and he’ll probably take the blame.
 

terrynever

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The Athletic’s Mike O’Connor discusses Philly’s post-up tendencies in a pick-and-roll league, and concludes with this stunning analysis.


Final thoughts
I’ve touched a lot on scheme here, but the personnel is to blame to a large extent. Simmons coming into the year with absolutely no improvement has been a killer — they needed him to contribute something in terms of perimeter creation, and still do. Embiid doesn’t look quite right, and while the spacing in the post has been iffy, he has navigated that dynamic very poorly.
Without trying to overreact to 13 games, it’s possible this team simply doesn’t work as constructed. They might not have enough shooting and perimeter creation, and that’s an impossible burden to overcome. But at the very least, they need to adjust their scheme and improve their execution. Until then, we won’t have a clear picture of how good this Sixers team is, and whether or not it can cohere in the long run.
 

Kliq

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I do think they miss Reddick a lot. There is a big difference between having him and having a guy like Josh Richardson, who can knock down open shots but doesn't supply the same kind of threat where teams absolutely have to sell out to stop him from getting a good look. Not to mention that Reddick coming off screens would open up possibilities for the roll-men if the defense had a miscommunication in switching onto Reddick.
 

lovegtm

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I do think they miss Reddick a lot. There is a big difference between having him and having a guy like Josh Richardson, who can knock down open shots but doesn't supply the same kind of threat where teams absolutely have to sell out to stop him from getting a good look. Not to mention that Reddick coming off screens would open up possibilities for the roll-men if the defense had a miscommunication in switching onto Reddick.
Yup. Raw 3pt %s matter so much less for spacing than the quick release needed to get those looks at volume.
 

HomeRunBaker

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I do think they miss Reddick a lot. There is a big difference between having him and having a guy like Josh Richardson, who can knock down open shots but doesn't supply the same kind of threat where teams absolutely have to sell out to stop him from getting a good look. Not to mention that Reddick coming off screens would open up possibilities for the roll-men if the defense had a miscommunication in switching onto Reddick.
Yes I was preaching this all summer/preseason. It isn’t only Redick’s shooting it is his off-the-ball movement utilizing screens that forces the defense out of position and susceptible when Redick is used as a decoy.

Another pet peeve I have is with the “Embiid doesn’t LOOK right” crowd. When has Embiid ever “looked” right? Late last year against us he was getting up and down the court like a Game 7 Willis Reed. He didn’t “look” right......but he ended up with like a 40/20 line or something like that. His numbers this year are virtually identical to last season. I think Embiid is always going to not “look” right as a lumbering yet agile 7-footer. He’s his own walking conundrum.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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I do think they miss Reddick a lot. There is a big difference between having him and having a guy like Josh Richardson, who can knock down open shots but doesn't supply the same kind of threat where teams absolutely have to sell out to stop him from getting a good look. Not to mention that Reddick coming off screens would open up possibilities for the roll-men if the defense had a miscommunication in switching onto Reddick.
Thirded. The most important stat that no one is ever going to figure out is spacing - being able to cover space on defense (either by talent or instinct) and conversely, being able to create space for others on offense.

They absolutely miss Reddick's gravity on offense. We thought Al shot a good amount of 3Ps in Boston; this year, he's up to 4.8 a game (he was 3.6 / 3.1 / 3.0) in Boston. But that's simply not the same as Reddick, plus Al is only shooting at 31.6% this year.
 

DJnVa

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The Athletic’s Mike O’Connor discusses Philly’s post-up tendencies in a pick-and-roll league, and concludes with this stunning analysis.


Final thoughts
I’ve touched a lot on scheme here, but the personnel is to blame to a large extent. Simmons coming into the year with absolutely no improvement has been a killer — they needed him to contribute something in terms of perimeter creation, and still do. Embiid doesn’t look quite right, and while the spacing in the post has been iffy, he has navigated that dynamic very poorly.
Without trying to overreact to 13 games, it’s possible this team simply doesn’t work as constructed. They might not have enough shooting and perimeter creation, and that’s an impossible burden to overcome. But at the very least, they need to adjust their scheme and improve their execution. Until then, we won’t have a clear picture of how good this Sixers team is, and whether or not it can cohere in the long run.

Here's the article for those that want to read it:

https://theathletic.com/1383694/2019/11/18/oconnor-after-a-disappointing-start-the-sixers-need-to-make-these-offensive-adjustments/
 

lovegtm

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Thanks for the link. He does a good job getting into the issues with the Sixers over-emphasis on post-ups, which is something I’ve also seen when I watch them play.

The Celtics are showing this year that post worries aren’t a legitimate reason not to go small. There are lots of ways to counter post dominance if you have speed, strength, and smart defensive players.

Philly seems moderately fucked to me, as currently constructed. Simmons+Embiid (although a MUCH more talented pairing) reminds me a lot of Utah wasting years trying to make Favors+Gobert work, when there just really wasn’t a way to mesh them.