Posted tagged ‘76ers’

The PhilaTude Favorites

August 6, 2009
PhilaTude

PhilaTude

Mentioned over many of my blog post are Philadelphia athletes that are our favorites.  How does one become a PhilaTude favorite?

Here are the criteria: 

1)       Be a current member of a Philadelphia sports team (under contract, disabled list is acceptable)
2)       Always put the team first over personal goals (as judged by me)
3)       Always compete at 100% or better (as judged by me)
4)       Never get into any trouble off of the field or embarrass themselves or team in public (Chase Utley broke this rule, otherwise he would be a perennial PhilaTude favorite)
5)       Exhibit PhilaTude – they must love their Philadelphia team and be proud of Philadelphia

The current roster of PhilaTude favorites are: 

1)       Mike Richards of the Flyers
2)       Stewart Bradley of the Eagles
3)       Dan Klecko of the Eagles
4)       Shane Victorino of the Phillies
5)       Ryan Howard of the Phillies
6)       Nick Cole of the Eagles 

Potential PhilaTude Favorites:

1)       Ryan Parent
2)       Chris Pronger
3)       JA Happ
4)       Andre Iguodala

Previous PhilaTude favorites were: 

1)       Brian Dawkins
2)       Sheldon Brown until he went crazy about his contract
3)       Derian Hatcher
4)       Hugh Douglas
5)       Troy Vincent

Thoughts on the criteria?  Thoughts on the current roster of PhilaTude favorites?

Leave a comment or send us an e-mail philatudeblog @ gmail.com

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Andre Miller to the Trail Blazers – Don’t Care

July 27, 2009
Andre Miller Signed with the Trail Blazers

Andre Miller Signed with the Trail Blazers

Andre Miller signs a 3 year deal with the Trail Blazers.  Who Cares?  Well, there are some pundits who believe that Miller was a crucial member of the Philadelphia 76ers.  Guess what?  He was a crucial member, moving forward, we really don’t need him.  So, the Sixers enter the season without a true, experienced point guard to lead a young team.  To be honest, I don’t think the Sixers are doing anything this year, so having Miller wouldn’t make a difference.

Let’s discuss his contract – the Sixers offered around 6 million for 1 year, while the Blazers have him for 3 years at 7 million a season.  The main difference is the length of the contract.  The Sixers wanted him for one year in an effort to get Jrue Holiday ready for the big time.  Andre Miller went for security, I don’t blame him.  Here’s what gets me, the Sixers were exploring a sign and trade deal with Miller.  Why didn’t they do it?  They could have signed him to a similar deal the Blazers gave him and then traded him.  They could have gotten something in return.  It probably wouldn’t have been much, but least it would have been something – maybe an expiring contract, some big man depth or even a defensive minded guard.  Oh well. 

What’s important to note is that Miller had very few options, so maybe he really isn’t as good or important as some people think.  I already told you, I don’t think he is all that.

Philly Sports Round-up

July 8, 2009
Chris Pronger and Paul Holmgren (Getty Images)

Chris Pronger and Paul Holmgren (Getty Images)

Yesterday, the Flyers signed Chris Pronger to the much anticipated and relieving contract extension.  Pronger is now signed for an additional 7 years to play with the Flyers crest on his sweater.  It is interesting to note that Pronger will be in his early 40’s when his contract expires, ensuring him he will finish his career as a Flyer.  The contract terms seem to point to a 5 million cap number for each of the seasons.  There have been some significant differences in the way different media outlets are reporting the numbers.  I have read that if Pronger retires, the Flyers do not have a cap hit for his salary because the deal was signed before he turns 35.  However, some disagree and think that if he retires, the salary will be a cap hit because the deal goes into affect after he turns 35, regardless of when he signed it.  Having Pronger locked into a 5 million cap number for the next few seasons is a huge bonus for the Flyers.  Pronger will be happy in Philadelphia and the Flyers fans will be happy he is here.  When I figure out the actual contract details, I will comment.

The Phillies took an early lead over the Reds yesterday, but failed to finish off the win.  As discussed in yesterday’s blog post, these are the games that the Phillies need to win.  They need to finish games strong and not allow their inconsistency to ruin significant opportunities for wins.  If they come out play well tonight, yesterday’s game might and hopefully be just an anomaly on their road to getting back on track.

All is quiet of the Sixers free agent front.  Andre Miller is holding out for 10 million a season.  The Sixers will pursue negotiating with Miller, but probably will also look at sign and trade deals with him.  I think the Sixers need him back for 2, maybe 3 years.

Aside from the Flyers and Sixers offseason roster updates and Phillies mid season action, things are quiet on the Philadelphia sports scene.  That will change once the Eagles get to training camp.

Flyers Mildly Active in Free Agency – 76ers Quiet

July 2, 2009
Ian Laperriere - newest Flyers forward

Ian Laperriere - newest Flyers forward

After a busy day on free agency in the NHL and NBA, the Philadelphia teams were only slightly active.  The Flyers signed a back-up goalie, Brian Boucher, to a very salary cap friendly contract.  They also signed Ian Laperriere to a 3 year contract at a cap friendly price.  Laperriere is a forward who plays with grit (a PhilaTude favorite word) and hates to lose.  He will be a solid third or fourth line veteran presence, who can kill penalties and take a strong leadership role.  The rest of the NHL was active, with the Rangers paying an immense amount of cash for an oft-injured Marion Gaborik.  The Canadiens rebuilt their top line by signing Mike Cammelleri, Brian Gionta and trading for Scott Gomez.  The 76ers did nothing, while the rest of the NBA was quiet except for the Pistons signing Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva.

The Flyers did lose Mike Knuble to the Washington Capitals.  The Caps paid close to 6 million over two years to Knuble, who is 37 years old.  I wanted the Flyers to resign Knuble, but only because I thought they could do it without giving up too much cash.  The Capitals overpaid for Knuble, I think he is only really worth 4 million over 2 years, which is probably what the Flyers offered him.  While I don’t wish Knuble any bad luck or harm, he is going to significantly miss out on a good Flyers season, similarly like Brian Dawkins who will miss out on an excellent Eagles season.  

The 76ers have announced that it might take some time to sign to Andre Miller.  I guess if he doesn’t sign anywhere else, it makes sense to wait.  Maybe he is waiting to see if he gets other offers, who knows?  An interesting development around the Houston Rockets is that Yao Ming won’t be playing next season.  If I were Ed Stefanski, I would try my hardest to trade the Rockets Samuel Dalembert and take whatever they will offer.

As discussed in yesterday’s post, there is no loyalty; it’s all about the money.  Players talk about staying and playing for their current team, but in the end it’s all about who gives them the largest contract.  Hopefully, the Flyers and Sixers aren’t done this off-season and we’ll have some more interesting news and new players to discuss.

Free Agency

July 1, 2009
Andre Miller, Free Agent

Andre Miller, Free Agent

Every year, there is excitement around which NHL or NBA free agents might sign in Philadelphia.  This year is no exception as the Flyers struggle to resign their own free agent, Mike Knuble, while the Sixers are dealing with Andre Miller, similarly.  Here’s my take on free agency:  I hate it. 

I hate for all it could be, but isn’t.  Here’s the deal – every team has to abide by a salary cap.  In the NHL it is hard cap with a minimum to be spent.  In the NBA there is a soft cap allowing teams to go over the cap for their own players and/or pay a luxury tax if they go over the cap.  Both salary cap systems have their strengths and weaknesses, but both don’t allow any wiggle room for free agency.  Free agency is all in the players’ hands, especially, the players in demand.  Free agency has come down to which team can pay the player the most amount of money. 

A few quick examples, Brian Dawkins signed for the most amount of money in Denver, when the Eagles had offered a similar, but less money contract.  Jim Thome signed with the Phillies a few years ago for the most amount of money even though his current team for many years offered him a pretty solid contract.  He was encouraged to take the money.  The NBA and NHL are no different.  Carlos Boozer opted out of his contract, rejected a solid offer from the Cavaliers and subsequently signed for an immense amount of money with the Utah Jazz.  Danny Briere of the Flyers signed for the most amount of money, instead of settling for a little less to play for his hometown team, the Montreal Canadiens.  Get the point?  It’s all about making the players wealthy. 

I want free agency to be about keeping teams together, providing chemistry building opportunities and finding an exciting player that isn’t on anyone’s radar.  Instead it’s about money and worrying about teams spending too close to the salary cap.  Wouldn’t it be great if there was an incentive for players to resign with their old clubs, if their clubs want them back, just like in the Miller and Knuble situations?  Since owners and teams have restrictions on their spending, shouldn’t the players be prevented from being overpaid?  To develop some significant loyalty to all sports leagues and it starts by finding a way to keep teams together, with significantly less talk about money and more talk about winning.

76ers Draft Jrue Holiday

June 26, 2009
Jrue Holiday at UCLA

Jrue Holiday at UCLA

Not quite sure how I feel about this pick.  Based on all of the analysis and rankings prepared by so-called college and pro basketball experts, Jrue Holiday was the right selection.  Drafting at 17, you need to select the best available player.  Holiday, apparently, was the best available player.  However, wouldn’t it have made sense to take a proven point guard, specifically, an Eric Maynor or Ty Lawson?  Those guys would have helped the Sixers now, maybe not from a superstar perspective, but from a depth standpoint.  Look, Holiday might turn out to be solid, but he isn’t a sure thing.  Based on information I read and have heard, Holiday is a true point guard, he just was stuck playing out of position at UCLA and has abilities as a floor leader with defensive capabilities.  The one time I watched UCLA this year was in the NCAA tournament against Villanova and I barely recall Holiday touching the ball – makes me a little uncomfortable that a top pick in a tournament game didn’t have an impact. (I know, it’s just one game).

The drafting of Holiday leads me to believe that rankings and analysis are flawed.  It appears that the rankings are based on the POTENTIAL of being a good NBA player, not on whether you would be a good NBA player NOW.  First round picks should be used on players that can contribute now.  Drafting potential is dangerous, especially when the salary is guaranteed.  A few years back, the Sixers drafted Lou Williams out of high school in the second round when they could afford for him to learn, develop and craft his potential.  His salary wasn’t guaranteed and there was no risk to the pick.  By selecting Holiday and passing on true point guards Maynor and Lawson, this pick will be continuously scrutinized.

I’m going to hold judgment on Holiday until he shows up for training camp.  I hope he works out, but realistically he might just be another Andre Turner.

Editor’s Notes:  Overall, this was a weak draft.  My favorite parts of the draft were the Ricky Rubio interview, the Knicks fans reacting to the selection of Jordan Hill and Commissioner Stern standing in front of Hasheem Thabeet.  Ricky Rubio is going to be a solid NBA player, he has all of the skills and vision needed to play the point, but in all of the highlights I have seen (even the Olympics) he appears to be a little slow.  It might just be because his teammates are slower or the style of play is designed to be more developing than the teams that run and gun in the NBA.  Regardless, Rubio will find a way to overcome his slowness, if he even is slow. 

Reading a few other Philadelphia related blog posts, I was rather surprised to see so much outrage about Dionte Christmas of Temple not getting drafting.  I was a little disappointed, but the knocks on Christmas outweighed his strengths.  I see him ending up in a training camp and having a solid career in Europe.

The New Old Logo

June 25, 2009
Charles Barkley and Moses Malone - Yahoo Sports

Charles Barkley and Moses Malone - Yahoo Sports

Word out of the 76ers camp wasn’t a big trade or draft information, but that the Sixers have returned to their old logo – making the old logo the new logo.  I love it.  Don’t know why they changed the logo in the first place to that “weird, scripty” lettering and color scheme that made the Sixers look cheesy. There is nothing better in sports than a classic looking logo and uniform.  

Most importantly, the new old logo symbolizes an era of winning.  The logo was the one that Moses, Charles and the Doctor all represented.  The Sixers won their 1983 championship sporting that logo.  Now, will the logo bring back the Sixers winning ways?  Do the Sixers have a better shot at winning the championship now that they have the old logo back?  I think the answer to both of the questions is emphatically, no.  The Sixers need a lot of help at all positions, including coach.  The logo only provides the opportunity for all of the current players and staff to buy into the winning that the logo represents. 

I’m excited for the old school look of the logo and the potential for the uniforms.  I’m not excited for the team the Sixers will field.  I’ve come to terms that Charles, Moses, Andrew Toney, Julius Erving and the rest of the guys aren’t coming back with the logo.

Notes:  The NBA draft is tonight and I don’t have any faith the Sixers will come away making a blockbuster trade or drafting a player that will help them.  The best possible scenario I see playing out is the Sixers will draft a point guard that could end up as a back-up on this current team.  Regardless of tonight or the rest of the off-season, the Sixers will be a middle of the road team next season and beyond.