Sunday, April 27, 2008

Sixers blow chance to take over series

(AP Photo/Tom Mihalek)
It was a tale of two halves. In the first half, the run and gun Sixers forced numerous Detroit turnovers en route to taking a ten point lead at halftime. In the second half, the Pistons defense took over and forced Philadelphia to take bad shots and dominated the Sixers to win the game 93-84 and tie the series at 2 games apiece.

The first half of the game looked just like the Sixers' Game Three blowout as Philly built a 14 point lead with a number of steals and fast break dunks. The Pistons looked lethargic on offense and didn't seem at all interested in playing defense. They flipped the switch at halftime and clamped down on defense, only allowing the Sixers to score 16 3rd quarter points. The Pistons beat the Sixers at their own game, forcing turnovers and finishing easy transition baskets at the other end.

The Sixers featured a balanced scoring attack with 6 players finishing in double figures. Thaddeus Young led the way with 15 points and Samuel Dalembert added 12 rebounds to go with his 12 points. Andre Iguodala played well in the first half but struggled down the stretch, finishing with 12 points on a 4 of 16 shooting night.

Philly had no answer for Tayshaun Prince, who shot 11 of 12 from the field to give him 23 points on the night. Prince couldn't be slowed down no matter who guarded him. Rasheed Wallace also played his best game of the series and finished with 20 points and 10 boards.

The Sixers missed a golden opportunity to take control of this series. They dominated in the first half and looked like they would easily build a 3-1 series lead but the Pistons had other ideas and completely shut them down when it mattered. Andre Iguodala, except for a massive dunk early in the first quarter of today's game, has looked completely flustered on the offensive end. He repeatedly settles for turnaround jumpers instead of trying to slash into the lane. He is the Sixers top scoring threat, so he feels the need to force things that just aren't there. It really highlights the Sixers need for another complementary scorer.

Game Five is back in Detroit. The Sixers will need to play the way they did in the first half of tonight's game if they want to stay in this series.

The big highlight of the night for the Sixers, Andre Iguodala's huge dunk over Rasheed Wallace. Notice Jimmy Rollins' reaction in the clip:

1 comment:

Joe said...

Call me a traditionalist or something, but I don't think you post that dunk when the player that did it had a horrible game and was the biggest reason his team lost since he played bad offense and defense.

Sixers need a new starting lineup. I don't care that this lineup has gotten them to 2-2 against a "superior team." The Sixers need to stop Prince and spread the floor a bit.

Carney as a starter and Willie to the bench makes sense to me since it arguably makes the Sixers better on offense and surely makes them better defensively.