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Jan 05 2014

Sixers Blaze Past Portland for 4th Straight Victory

Philadelphia 76ers 101 Final

Recap | Box Score

99 Portland Trail Blazers
Thaddeus Young, PF Shot Chart 41 MIN | 14-20 FG | 1-2 FT | 6 REB | 2 AST | 3 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 30 PTS | +6

Thaddeus Young continued his stellar play, leading the Sixers to an impressive win over the Trailblazers. Young was incredibly efficient making 14 of 20 shots en route to 30 points. He also chipped in six rebounds, three steals and two assists in over 40 minutes of action. Young also was strong on the defensive end using his quickness to disrupt LaMarcus Aldridge. As the NBA trade deadline gets closer, Young continues to elevate his play.

Evan Turner, SF Shot Chart 36 MIN | 9-20 FG | 3-4 FT | 7 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 4 TO | 23 PTS | +8

Evan Turner made it happen when it mattered for the Sixers against Portland. Turner notched a huge three with just under seven minutes to go and followed that up with a big two. Turner also came up big at the free throw stripe in the final seconds. Turner’s 23 points and seven rebounds gave the Sixers the second punch that they needed. Turner also drew the task of defending Nicholas Batum who shot a lowly 1-9 for four points.

Spencer Hawes, C Shot Chart 33 MIN | 3-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 9 REB | 7 AST | 4 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 9 PTS | +11

Spencer Hawes failed to light it up on the offensive end but he was effective on the defensive end for Philadelphia. Hawes chipped in against Aldridge who despite scoring 29 points, did so on an inefficient 13-30 shooting performance. Hawes made some smart plays on the offensive end dishing out 7 assists. He also nailed two big free throws in the closing moments.

Michael Carter-Williams, PG Shot Chart 33 MIN | 5-16 FG | 6-8 FT | 9 REB | 4 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 16 PTS | -5

Another solid performance by the Sixers rookie point guard. MCW was solid overall scoring 16 points and pulling down nine rebounds. Carter-Williams had a strong defensive performance against Damian Lillard who shot just 6-20 from the floor.

Tony Wroten, SG Shot Chart 26 MIN | 4-10 FG | 4-7 FT | 3 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 12 PTS | -1

Tony Wroten fulfilled the spark plug role for the Sixers tonight. Wroten, playing in front of a group of family and friends, gave the Sixers maximum effort off the bench. Wroten certainly took his share of chances on the offensive end but he managed 12 points and three assists. Much like Carter-Williams, Wroten used his length to disrupt the flow of the Portland offense while keeping their perimeter shooters in check.

By The Numbers:

  • 4: The Sixers current winning streak. The hot stretch is the team’s longest of the season and was a strong way to close out a west coast swing.
  • 0: The number of games the Sixers have lost in 2014.

Quote of the Game:

“On a night when the Eagles lose a tough playoff game, the Sixers offer the tiniest bit of consolation.” -Marc Zumoff

Parting Shots:

The biggest question following this game is who’s tanking now? The Sixers have yet to lose a game since the calendar flipped over to 2014 and all of those wins have come against the stronger Western Conference. Closing out that stretch against Portland, who entered the game with the NBA’s best record, proved that the players are still playing with the same amount of fight as they were at the beginning of the season despite some rough stretches. The Sixers will now head home to do battle with the Minnesota Timberwolves before heading back on the road to face the Cavaliers on “Andrew Bynum Judgement Day” in Cleveland.

The Sixers will also await word on the condition of Michael Carter-Williams who sustained a blow to the head from Thaddeus Young on the game’s final play.

 

  • robbybonfire23

    You are a mental worm, buddy.

  • robbybonfire23

    If you want to make the case that a player had a “shut-down” game, defensively, the best way to back up that assertion would be to refer to the player’s totals in the blocked shots and the steals columns. Looking at MCW’s numbers there, he totaled ONE block and ZERO steals. So that it looks like the man he was guarding had an off-night, from the floor, not much to do with any special D effort on the part of MCW.

  • robbybonfire23

    If you want to make the case that a player had a “shut-down” game, defensively, the best way to back up that assertion would be to refer to the player’s totals in the blocked shots and the steals columns. Looking at MCW’s numbers there, he totaled ONE block and ZERO steals. So that it looks like the man he was guarding had an off-night, from the floor, not much to do with any special D effort on the part of MCW>

  • hk99

    robby,

    A player can absolutely play good defense without getting steals or rebounds. All 30% from the field shooting performances are not created equal. Did Carter-Williams force Lillard to take shots from the floor that are usually outside of his comfort zone? Did Carter-Williams contest most of Lillard’s shots? Did Lillard have a ton of open looks and just miss on shots he would normally make? I didn’t watch the game, so I don’t know.

  • robbybonfire23

    We agree, HK. I am just saying that it is really an excellent barometer, when impressive Steals and Blocks numbers are in place. Also, and this is a concern, it appears the defensive effort on MCW’s part is reducing the impact of his offensive contribution, although that I cannot say for sure. Just am really concerned about his offensive tailspin, of late.

    • hk99

      I think you expect too much, too soon from the 11th pick in the draft. MCW is leading the NBA in steals per game, leading all rookie PG’s by a wide margin in blocks per game, averaging nearly 6 rebounds per game and averaging more than 7 assists per game. If the expectation was that he’d be a 45%+ shooter from the field in year 1, he would have been a top 3 pick in last year’s draft. The knock on him was that his outside shot needed (and still needs) work. If it improves, he’s going to be a star. If not, he’s going to continue to be a very good player.

      • robbybonfire23

        An interesting survey would be to determine how many, and what percentage of guards coming into the NBA, have been able to dramatically upgrade their shooting game, to round out the inventory of other/superb skills they already possess? My guess is not many, but then, with statistical research, there can be stunning surprises.

        • hk99

          Of the first 5 PG’s that came to my mind (Russell Westbrook, Chris Paul, Jrue Holiday, Steve Nash and Rajon Rondo), 4 significantly improved their FG% after their rookie seasons. Of course, five is a small sample size, but I think that greater research would find that most rookies improve as shooters after their rookie seasons. I suspect that this is more due to improved shot selection than from being better shooters, but I would expect MCW to benefit from better shot selection with more experience. I also think that as rookies age and mature, their increased strength, stamina and overall physical condition probably also plays a role in their improved shooting %.

  • robbybonfire23

    That is valuable research. Also, while certainly not a PG, take a look at Lebron’s almost consistent improvement in his annual career FG percentage. This, if figures would not be the result of an improvement in natural ability, so much as his becoming a student of the game at an ever-higher level.

    So that while a case can be made for us and for the team exhibiting “patience” with MCW’s offensive “development,” I still wish they would immediately instill the discipline in him to limit his shots to no more than 10 per game. With the team playing so well, lately, his putting up a dozen or so “bricks” per game is counter-productive – assuming that this team is maturing too rapidly and being cohesive far beyond early season “tanking” considerations.

    Imagine the fun we’re going to have discussing/debating Noel’s “specialized” game, when he joins up, and I am back to hoping that comes about this season, now that this season has taken on a meaningful luster in terms of the team coming together and actually learning how to win in the midst of a difficult travel schedule.

  • DianneRedulla

    No way the Sixers will reach the Playoffs. No way.