Sunday, April 20, 2008

Unimpressive play gives hope for hopeless series

By Jeff Glauser
The Phanatic Magazine

Tonight’s Sixers’ game was, needless to say, exciting.

However, for me, it was not for the obvious reasons. Yes, simply making the playoffs this year can be considered playing with house money. And sure, very few people possessing sanity and logic figured them to have a shot to win at Detroit, if at all, much less have a series lead.

Instead, I’m excited because:

- Andre Iguadala, the go-to guy, played dreadfully on offense, consistently making poor shooting decisions.

- Sam Dalembert and Lou Williams were not much better.

- The Sixers were outhustled for most of the night.

- Free throw shooting once again almost proved to be their demise.

- Three point shooting, sans a Willie Green make, was non-existent.

(A recipe for success, eh?)

My point is not that I’m secretly plotting against my favorite team. It’s that the Sixers played a hesitant and overall sub-par game against one of the NBA’s elite squads and came out on top. It’s the fact that they were beating themselves for much of the game as opposed to getting beat and yet prevailed.

Yeah, yeah, Reggie Evans – typically offensive on offense – pulled a game out of his posterior region. And sure, Thaddeus Young looked anything but his name. But the fact is that the Sixers can play better than this. Yes, the Pistons can too (just ask Chauncey Billups, he of the automatic foul shot missing three down the stretch), but that doesn’t concern me as much.

Why? Because they just won a game they should have lost. And those of us who have watched this bunch during their unprecedented run these past few months know that they are due to win a game they should win, as well.

Which means this series goes at least six games. And if that game that they should win just so happens to happen on Wednesday, then it gets really interesting: A little thing called momentum comes into play.

It’s enough to give a fan some hope. Certainly not delusions of grandeur of a monumental upset at this point, but perhaps some saving grace that this thing might just be a lot more competitive than I once believed.

(With that said, let’s hope that we don’t see the same type of highlights that I previously noted – the chances of lightening striking Detroit twice is extremely rare.)

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