Editors Note: Let’s welcome new contributor Jacob Brunner to the GrowthPlates communion! But before we get to his insightful screed on the great dissonance of Sixers fan-dom, we would be remiss if we, as a basketball blog, failed to report on the “Dunk Heard Round the World”; the nihilistic jam perpetuated by DeAndre Jordan this Sunday past.
DeAndre!!! The children, THINK ABOUT THE CHILDREN!!!
And… Here’s the video…
Now that we’ve gotten that bit of excitement out of the way, Back to Jacob and the Sixers!
The Sixers’ 2012-13 season has been an exercise in masochism— a steady diet of boring games and bad basketball. They’ll show up one night against a good team, only to follow suit with a humiliating loss to a lesser franchise. Symbols of absurd mediocrity abound: Bynum’s hair parade, Doug Collins’ loopy smile as a means of saving face, a gargantuan t-shirt gun in place of an actual mascot. The basketball world winces, if they’re even looking. I fear to look; yet I cannot turn away!
The Bynum saga sits right at the top of the dung heap. His clownish antics add a tragicomic layer. The product is terrible, sure, but Bynum makes you laugh. Evan Turner has his own version of Groundhog Day in the lane: curling away from above-average athletes, offering up a sacrificial ball for any competent defender, giving the refs his petulant routine. The team offense hasn’t fared much better. Zero paint presence + a pathological fondness for long twos = an anemic offense of defunct exterior “shooters”.
Doug Collins has appeared, at times, to be dancing with insanity. Taking a team to task is fine (especially one this devoid of passion, pride, and intensity). But Collins can no longer pretend he’s suitable for this line of work. An overemotional basketball genius and a true father, DC commands the fans’ respect. If only he could command it from his players who, in contrast to his claims, appear put off by his energizer mouth and subtle narcissism. The “three-year curse” is in full effect, and just as well, because this team needs a general, not a father.
A paucity of talent does him no favors, you might say. Scary news: Collins envisioned this roster. Bynum or no Bynum, there isn’t much depth. If the front office has any sense, they’ll dump Collins, perform an external search, and replace the pawns around Jrue and Thad.
Bynum’s specter looms—I’m romantic enough to hold out for a reasonable contract and 75% serviceability for a few seasons. My rational half, however, knows better. We gave up a lot, got a chimera, and may be forced to taste some.
The only thing to do is strap on the horse blinkers. Tank, tank, tank and pray you find a diamond in what’s looking to be a rough 2013 Draft. Let one thing be clear, though. I don’t mean aim to lose—the Sixers don’t need a stratagem for embarrassment. Theirs comes naturally.