Tuesday, March 25, 2008

The Sixers Finally Beat the Celtics

If you are Andre Iguodala's agent, and you're trying to get max money for your client this summer from the Sixers, you may want to commit last night's game against the Celtics to DVD and send a copy to the Sixers about every other day during the negotiations to remind the Sixers just how good Iguodala is now and will be in the future.

The Sixers, behind Iguodala's defense and a 19 - 0 4th quarter run, beat the Eastern Conference leader, the Boston Celtics by a score of 95 - 90. A cynic may say that the Celtics were weary, coming off a long road trip. I'm not sure it matters as the Sixers, for the first time this season, finally solved their old rival that they hadn't beaten all year. I am far more inclined to credit the athleticism of the Sixers and the way they are all pulling together at about the right time then any fatigue the Celtics might have been experiencing.

Andre Iguodala's night? 28 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists, and 3 steals. Also, Iggy threw down some tremendous dunks that will fit in nicely with his ever-growing portfolio of highlight reel moments.

I don't know who the Sixers are going to meet in the playoffs, but whoever it is, better know that this isn't the Sixers from last year, that folded under pressure. This Sixers team will run and run, and then, run some more. They play pressure defense and can make you look silly with the resulting easy buckets. Take it from Doc Rivers:

“If they play like they’ve played, that’s a talent the other team can’t practice against,” Rivers said. “You can’t practice against hard play - and that’s a huge advantage for them.” - Doc Rivers - Today's Boston Herald

As I've been saying during this run, where they've knocked off some elite teams, this team definitely has some holes. They have almost zero low post offensive presence and no dead-eye from long range to create openings down low. But they are making the most of what they do have and it has been more than enough to create an entertaining brand of basketball.

The best analogy I can come up with for this season is that this Sixers season is the $20 bill you find in your pocket when you are doing the wash. You completely forgot about the $20 bill, but now that you have it, you figure you'll do something cool with it because it's found money. Well, that's what this Sixers season feels like; found money.

Andre Miller continued his brilliant season with a 20 point, 6 rebound, 6 assist effort and Thaddeus Young contributed 16 points to pace the reserves.

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