Category: Sixers (page 1 of 114)

Philly Fans (and Media) and the Fear of Something New

Photo Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Photo Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Sam Hinkie is a fraud. Chip Kelly thinks he’s still in college. Dave Hakstol should still be in college. The Phillies.

These are the loudest and most prevalent(?) gripes about Philly sports today. Many writers echo these sentiments (locally and nationally). The old-timers feel that way. But shouldn’t a town that has felt the joy of victory so infrequently in its history be more willing to accept a different way of doing things as long as the goal is to win championships? David Murphy has a theory:

Maybe the people who complain about Hinkie and Kelly and Dave Hakstol are all the same people, and, if they are, maybe they are indicative of some sort of reactionary ethos that lies deep in the identity of this town, one that opposes anything that is not done the way it is “supposed” to be done, the way it has always been done, the way our fathers and their fathers watched it be done, back when programs cost a nickel, and Concrete Charlie wreaked havoc all over Franklin Field.

And, if they are, maybe the volume and violence of their reaction to the recent upheaval is indicative of the influence that the protectors of the ethos once held, because theirs is the reaction of a power structure that is no longer. And if all of this is true – if the hate of Hinkie and the doubt of Kelly originate with an ideology so strong it once served as a fundamental aspect of selfhood in the city of Philadelphia – then maybe it long served to influence the decision-making of the city’s sports teams, pushing local ownership groups toward the familiar, the comfortable, the traditional in their hiring, prioritizing guys who said “wooder” and “sawff pressle” over guys with newfangled ideas who didn’t really care what the locals thought.

Murphy’s right. For a city born out of dissent and revolution, Philadelphians are a proud, traditional people. In fact, “Phila,” the Greek word for love, might not be what describes us best after all. Maybe it’s “storge,” meant to show “mere acceptance or putting up with situations, as in ‘loving’ the tyrant.” Storgedelphia sounds awful though.

The Phillies’ last three managers have been hires from the quasi-inside. The Eagles stuck with Andy Reid for 408 years. The Sixers’ GM history is a list of former coaches and Billy King. And the Flyers finally hired not only someone from outside the Flyers, but also outside the NHL. In dire sports times like these, risk should be greeted with enthusiasm (or at the very least, acceptance), but the capital “w” Writers and first-time, long-timers prefer things to be the way they’ve always been. The way that brought two Stanley Cups to the Flyers (last in 1975), three championships to the Sixers (last in 1983), two World Series wins to the Phillies (’80 and ’08), and exactly zero Super Bowl victories to the Eagles.

But, to many, people who embrace the risks are Kool-Aid drinkers or apologists or don’t know enough about the sport, as if you have to have an encyclopedic knowledge of the dead-ball era to want to win. The Flyers have been stagnant, the Sixers have been goal-less, the Eagles hit a wall, and the Phillies have been tumbling down a steep hill, hitting every bump along the way. But instead of really looking at the Sixers’ post-Iverson era or the Eagles’ lack of Super Bowl wins, it’s just: Different is bad. Nerds don’t belong in sports. It’s all a Ponzi scheme. Chip is just going back to college anyway. They’re all frauds*.

But the thing is, it’s easy to know what you’re getting. It’s relaxing to know you’ll get at least 10 wins and make it to the second round of the playoffs. It’s less stressful to know you’ll finish right around .500 and maybe luck into winning a playoff round. But it’s also less fun. And as much as sports here are “business,” they are not serious business. They’re supposed to be fun. And if you can’t have fun because things aren’t the way things were — or even worse, if that makes you angry — then you’re doing sports wrong.

*I challenge every sports writer out there to go a full year without calling someone a fraud. It’s the most overused and hyperbolic word in Philly sports media.


Here’s a Sixers Jersey Mockup Based on Confirmed Leaks and Rumors

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Graphic designer Conrad Burry (@conradburry) updated his Sixers uniform mockup based on a tip a reader sent to us.* Is it accurate? Who knows?! WHO CARES?!?! [I think it is.] But this… this would be a good look.

*This is how you perpetuate a story: blog about it, update it, commission new mockup, blog about it again. This is how the ESPN machine works. I can do this, too. Let me try something else: SAM HINKIE IS RACIST.** WE’LL DISCUSS TONIGHT ON SPORTSCENTER, AND THEN TOMORROW ON FIRST TAKE, AND THEN WE’LL DO AN ONLINE EXPOSE ABOUT IT, AND THEN ALL THE RATINGS AND MONEY. Nailed it.

**That’s a complete joke. Don’t want to get sued. Sam Hinkie, by all accounts, loves people of all races… especially if they have virtually no cap hit.


In the Absence of Anything to Write about, Daily News Again Rolls out Nonsensical Hags’ Take on Sixers


Look, I can assure you that this is traditionally a horrible sports week. Unless the Flyers are in the Conference Finals or the Phillies are, you know, good, the weeks around summer holidays (MEMORIAL DAY IS SUMMER DAMMIT AND DON’T LET ANYONE TELL YOU OTHERWISE!) can be painful. For our part, it’s not a lack of trying… it’s a lack of happening. I’d much rather be busy than be searching. So I get that daily publications that need content ready by 12 a.m. to be sent to the printer so it can be put on trucks and driven to houses and businesses by 6 a.m. have to get creative… but maybe the old-timers at the Daily News can come up with something better than the Sixers are frauds.

Editors asked writers if the Sixers’ plan – to play the odds and stockpile young talent in the service of building a winning organization – is worth it. These are actual responses. See if you can guess who said what:

A) No.

When it comes to being lucky, they’re cursed. For the record – not that they ever seem to care about their record – the Sixers are oh-fer The Lottery.

The Sixers failed – that’s what it was: failure – to gain possession of the Lakers’ and the Heat’s picks this year, too. They prayed that the Lakers would fall out of the top five, the Heat out of the top 10.


B) Yes, because math.

So the evidence suggests the difference between Very Good and Very Mediocre is -150,000 fans, while the difference between Very Mediocre and Very Bad is -55,000 fans.

Q: If a Bad Instead of Mediocre Season (BIOMS) is worth -55,000, and a Great Instead of Mediocre Season (GIOMS) is worth +150,000, how many GIOMS does it take to make up for three BIOMS?

A: One. It takes the Sixers one great season to earn back the ticket revenue they lose over three bad seasons. So a four-year stretch that goes Bad-Bad-Bad-Good equals one that goes OK-OK-OK-OK.


C) No.

As a charter member of the club that is convinced the Sixers “plan’’ is a fraud that is serving only to strip away all its highly-paid assets as the franchise has increased in value by more than 300 percent under the shrewd businessmen that own it and believes the end-game is more likely to be a highly profitable sale than an NBA championship, the ‘was the tanking worth it’ question is a snapshot into a larger picture that may take a while to come into focus.

The Sixers could get as many as four first-round picks in next year’s draft. And that is what they will be selling between now and June 2016. I am not buying.

This is a shell game that appeals to fantasy players and wannabe general managers. It is not a model based on 2015 basketball reality.


Find out who said what after the jump. Continue reading


UPDATE: Graphic Designer Takes Sixers’ Uni Clues to Mock Up Full Look

sixers home

Based off of Nerlens’ suit jacket sneak-peek from last night’s lottery, and his mention of stars down the sides, could this be what the new Sixers home uniforms will look like? Graphic designer and uni-fan Conrad Burry, who discovered the new Sixers wordmarks, mocked these up using all the info we have so far, and they look pretty damn good. You figure there’s gotta be some red in there somewhere, so the trim is a nice touch, but the side panels could even be white, trimmed in, with red or blue stars. We won’t know for a few more weeks, but the clues are at least giving us some idea. Burry’s mock ups for the away and alternate unis are after the jump.

UPDATE: No idea if this is true, but as part of my (Kyle) pledge to post all unsubstantiated tips from now on, one reader – whose name checks out on a LinkedIn search – checks in with the following:

Those renderings that guy created are close to accurate except the siding of the uniforms are going to be blue not red. Accurate portrayal of the stars though.

Tony Chennault was actually one of the people modeling the jersey in the photo shoot. As a Nova guy I thought you’d get a kick out of that.

Other renderings after the jump.

Continue reading


The NBA Draft Lottery Got Much Higher Ratings Locally than Phillies Games Typically Get



Last night, a whole bunch of people showed up at lottery parties (specifically Liberty Ballers’) to see where the ping pong balls fell. But it wasn’t just the partiers who were watching, because the lottery set a record. According to Ben Cafardo (via RealGM), the 3.2 overnight rating the lottery drew made it the highest rated lottery ever shown on ESPN.

Locally, the lottery drew a 4.8 rating – the 5th highest local market rating – which was more than a full ratings point higher than what the Phillies got last year– 3.18. Those aren’t quite NFL draft numbers, but for a guy opening envelopes very slowly, it’s pretty good.

And elsewhere in lottery news, Sam Hinkie knew about the #OneSixEleven hashtag and might have a super secret twitter account. Hinkie told Zach Lowe:

“I was teasing Scott [O’Neill, the Sixers’ CEO] about it: Why don’t we just wish to be 9 feet tall? That’s not gonna happen either. Why get your hopes up? There’s all sorts of things I would like that have a 1-in-500 chance of happening, but I don’t tweet about many of them.”

NEED to know Hinkie’s Twitter account. Need it.


UPDATE: Presenting the Most Butthurt Sports Writer of All-Time

Voila_Capture 2015-05-20_12-20-19_PM

Move over, Flyers Core Four— there’s a new complainer in town, and this guy hates children.

Steph Curry’s kid, much like her father, is just dominating things right now, and when she stole the show at Curry’s press conference after the game last night, it stoked the IRE of one old-timey sports writer who had to string together a series of athlete clichés AND IN A HURRY, DAMMIT! This guy:

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Somehow, this guy – whose name I don’t even care about looking up – missed the genuine #adorbs in this…

Voila_Capture 2015-05-20_12-20-38_PM

… and this…

Voila_Capture 2015-05-20_12-21-06_PM

… and was more concerned with getting Curry’s thoughts… wait a minute… he got the #adorbs and Curry’s thoughts? So, what, exactly, is the problem?

That guy deleted his Tweet and put up this one:

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UPDATE: Missed this– yes of course Skip Bayless had a problem with it, too:

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via (@ZooWithRoy)


Mallory Edens Resurfaces(!) With Shot at Creepy Blogger

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I JUST KNEW A DRAFT LOTTERY COULDN’T GO BY WITHOUT MALLORY EDENS, the daughter of Bucks owner something something Edens. Their team not in it? That’s cool– with the help of a creepy old writer, Edens has resurfaced, this time to come after said creepy old writer, who wrote a bunch of creepy old things on his blog.

Chris Sheridan, of Sheridan Hoops, somehow weaved Edens and wife of Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor, Becky, as a thread through his lottery piece. As you know, we’re big fans of Edens (and Dr. J looks like he might be, too) and think it should be written into league rules that she attend every lottery and sit in the front row. It seems Sheridan would co-sign that bill. And had he just stopped at lamenting her absence last night and commenting on her attractiveness – she’s 19 – things would’ve been just fine, even though the lefty weirdos taking over modern sports media would have you believe that it’s a mortal sin to comment on the looks of any particular female (even a female writer from the Washington Post wrote warm-blooded story about Edens last year) . But, unfortunately for Sheridan, he went way beyond appearances and ventured deep into the realm of the weird in describing Eden:

One year after Mallory Edens captivated us all at the NBA draft lottery, a new NBA rule deprived us of a close-up look at the trophy wife of Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor.

Her name is Becky, she is fantastic looking, and she was supposed to have been onstage instead of the 74-year-old Mr. Taylor as the T-Wolves won the top pick in the 2015 NBA draft.

Unfortunately, the puritans at the NBA instituted a new “no family” rule for this year’s lottery, which also means we’ve seen the last of Nick Gilbert and his bow tie.

Yes, this is a shame. But the lottery is not about trophy wives or trophy daughters or even trophies — at least in the short term. It is about hope for the future, and the T-Wolves have a little more of that now with a young core that includes Rookie of the Year Andrew Wiggins, 2013 No. 1 overall pick Anthony Bennett (if he does not turn into LaRue Martin 2.0) and the Spaniard who is the Mallory Edens of young men, Ricky Rubio.

You can bash the Sixers all you want between now and then, but remember this: When it is all said and done, Hinkie is going to walk away from all this looking a lot better than young Ms. Edens or the older Mrs. Taylor.

In the long run, this will go down as just one of the years when Hinkie’s tanking strategy was accumulating dividends. They are going to be a beast for years and years to come, and the NBA will eventually change the lottery system to prevent another Hinkie from jobbing the system. But mark my words, the Sixers were the biggest long-term winners Tuesday night. And they didn’t even have to move up or down to come out on top.

Taylor has his trophy wife. Edens will one day be somebody’s trophy GF.

Hinkie? He’ll be the one with the stockpile of Larry O’Brien trophies. And his legacy will last  longer than our memories of the comely Ms. Edens and the equally lovely Mrs. Taylor.

Let’s set the ground rules here:

OK: Comment on the hotness of an of-age person.

Not OK: Comment on the hotness of an of-age person, who happens to attend Princeton, and then compare her to the worldly possessions of rich men by referring to her as somebody’s “trophy GF” while giving us the weird visual of Hinkie’s head on her body. Gross.

Edens fired back about the latter one:

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Point Edens. We’ll see if Sheridan returns serve… just as soon as he’s done making his way through Edens’ Instagram (@mallory_edens) account.


College Analyst Seth Greenberg, Whose Brother Was Fired by Pat Croce, Called Pat Croce “a joke” on the Radio This Morning


With the Sixers being in the NBA Lottery last night, and the Iverson documentary premiering last week, there has been quite a bit of talk about that day 19 years ago when Pat Croce celebrated getting the number one pick and turned it into Allen Iverson. It changed the franchise. But does Croce get too much credit? According to at least one person, YUP.

Seth Greenberg, ESPN college basketball analyst and longtime NCAA coach, was on the 97.5 morning show today talking draft prospects with Anthony Gargano and Jon Marks. Greenberg’s brother, Brad, was the GM when the Sixers drafted Iverson. He was fired at the end of the next season after the team put together only 22 wins. Seth still sounds salty about it. Late in the segment, Greenberg was asked about Mario Hezonja… and mustered up this:

Audio courtesy 97.5 The Fanatic

“You know it’s interesting, my brother Brad who actually drafted Allen Iverson, never got credit for that but typical Philadelphia. Pat Croce was too busy taking credit … that guy’s a joke. I’m telling the truth.”

Is Greenberg over Croce making his brother walk the plank 19 years ago? It doesn’t seem like it. But he tweeted afterwards that the Philly part was just a joke:


But the only joke around here is PAT CROCE, right Seth? RIGHT?

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