• December 9, 2022

Third Season Is A Charm For Sixers

When the Philadelphia 76ers made their attempt at a big splash three seasons ago by signing Elton Brand, expectations for the club skyrocketed. Those expectations were transformed into cheers because the 76ers were allegedly on the right track to the playoffs. Unfortunately, Brand’s first season was limited due to injuries while his second season was not one to write home about. However just like the saying “the third time is the charm” Brand has come alive in his third year with the club and has proven his worth.

“I’ve had more time this year for my injury to heal up,” said Brand. “The team and I are responding well this year. We’re playing real well…We’re jelling”

Brand has scored 20+ points eight times during the first half of the season, and is playing his best basketball since the 2006-07 season with the L. A. Clippers. Brand is averaging the most minutes (34.8), and points (15.0) of his career since arriving in Philadelphia. And like a good team should be, when the leader of the club is playing well, those around him also excel.

“He has been helping us maneuver on the floor and has been a coach out there,” said Sixers forward Thaddeus Young. “We definitely need him out on the floor.”

“Elton is good for the team on and off the court,” said Sixers second year player Marreese Speights. “When stuff gets tough out there he calms us down. We rely on him in hard situations.”

Becoming the veteran guy on a team sometimes is hard for players as they get older. Sometimes it signifies the end of you career is closer rather than far away. But Brand has excepted his role on this club with open arms.

“It is definitely a different role for me. Sometimes I need to come down and say ‘lets get a good shot or lets do this or lets do that,’ ” said Brand. “I just make sure I tell them when we need to get a good possession so we can win the game when I need to. They are definitely following my lead.”

Winning games is something this team is doing more often. Last season the Sixers didn’t get their 19th win of the season until game number 50. This year it only took 44 games to get their 19th win. What’s the difference? Well they appear to be playing more team ball and Brand is definitely playing a big role in making sure that happens.

“Sometimes it’s my night to have a big scoring night, sometimes it’s Jrue’s (Holiday) night,” said Brand. “That’s what’s great about this team, we have strength in numbers.”

Since the end of the Allen Iverson era, it has been extremely hard for fans to get excited about the present/future of the team. However there is something about what they have going on right now that makes the future seem a tad bit brighter. Brand and the club are in the middle of a playoff hunt and could possibly finish anywhere from 6th to 8th in the East. Regardless of where they finish this season, this team is an extremely fun team to watch and will get better as they grow and mature.

John Jervay

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January 26, 2011 3:58 pm

I love how all the people that were clamoring for Iverson to be traded are now MIA. The Sixers have been trash since the trade and are nothing to get excited about.

At least when Iverson was here, he gave you a shot. We always had a shot at winning against anybody. When we beat the Celtics/Heat/Lakers nowadays, it’s like WOW! We just won the championship!

January 26, 2011 7:18 pm

Does anyone find the word “Charm” and the “Sixers” in the same sentence of a Headline
kind of revolting …

January 27, 2011 11:42 am

@paulman Yes that is odd to hear those words in the same sentence..but it’s reality. This team/organization is a lot better than most are giving them credit
@Birdo Yeah a lot of the people that wanted Iverson gone are the same people that do not show up to games or even watch on TV…well I’ve got news for everyone…this group of players are rather fun to watch. No they are not a title contender but they can beat any team on any given night

January 27, 2011 11:49 am

The Sixers are definitely on the way back up and have lots of good young talent and it appears that COllins has a good rotation right now and players understand their roles..
The key is for youngsters Speights,T Young,L Williams to become consistent contributors and buy into
their roles.. But they are getting better and better…

January 31, 2011 5:16 pm

@Birdo, the NBA is a star-based league and Iverson is no longer a star (see also O’Neal, Shaquille). I loved AI – he was a player you could not appreciate on TV as much as you could when you were in the building. The cameras could do no justice to his speed and heart. However, his game was the type that would fall off of a cliff as soon as he got slow. I had no problem trading him, but you had to get a superstar or close to superstar back. The 76ers did not. That is why I am in favor of trading Iggy for Melo, even without a Melo signing a new deal. If you do the trade, you may be able to convince Melo to stay cause you can give him more money than anyone else. If he doesn’t stay, you just dumped Iggie’s big contract and you put Thad in his spot (not a big dropoff).