TJ’s face best exemplifies the December 76ers.
Joel Embiid was first “questionable”, then became “probable”, before being declared “out” about 30 minutes before gametime. That whole phase took about eight hours. That in itself is an entirely separate problem from the play on the hardwood. Yesterday’s injury report consisted of six players (Justin Anderson, Trevor Booker [who did play last night], Embiid, Markelle Fultz, Furkan Korkmaz, and JJ Redick).
The Sixers fell to the Toronto Raptors 114-109 at home after leading the game by as much as 22. Toronto went on a 30-8 run to take command of the game and once again disappoint the Sixer crowd. Dario Saric had a near triple-double with 18 points, 10 rebounds, and nine assists, along with a pair of blocks. Ben Simmons added 20 points, and Robert Covington collected 19. But that was nowhere near DeMar DeRozan’s 45 points and Kyle Lowry’s 23.
The team has lost eight of their last nine games, 2-10 since the calendar turned to December, and 4-12 since Thanksgiving.
Is Brett Brown really in the hot seat now? I’m not so sure about that. It could be another overreaction regarding the team’s recent struggles, but I do think there is some concern that his job isn’t safe going into next season. This was supposed to be “the year” the Sixers began to make their mark in the Eastern Conference in a good way.
David Fizdale is available by the way.
Sixers play Toronto again in the second part of their home-and-home Saturday afternoon at 5 PM.
Check out the latest Crossing Broadcast, where Kyle, Adam, and Russ discuss last night’s game, among other topics.
Did you happen to watch the Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl last night? Most of you probably didn’t and if you did (like me), bless your heart. Temple played and beat Florida International 28-3 for the team’s first bowl victory since the 2011 Gildan New Mexico Bowl over Wyoming.
Frank Nutile went 18-of-28 for 254 yards, a passing touchdown, and a rushing touchdown, while David Hood rushed for 78 yards on 12 carries with a touchdown. Keith Kirkwood led all receivers with six catched for 96 yards.
The Temple defense recorded a bowl-record 7.5 sacks and three turnovers, a season-high.
The Owls finish the season at 7-6.
The Eagles are wearing black on Christmas. Not a huge surprise there.
But there were a couple of surprises at practice yesterday, specifically with those who didn’t practice.
#Eagles Thursday Injury Report
DNP: DE Barnett (groin), CB Mills (ankle)
Limited: LB Kendricks (foot), G Wisniewski (ankle)
Full: CB Robinson (concussion), G Warmack (hamstring)
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) December 21, 2017
Patrick Robinson did clear the concussion protocol and he’s all good with that and with defensive backs coach Cory Undlin.
Fellow cornerback Ronald Darby apologized for his Twitter rant from earlier in the week after ripping on fans and the media for criticism of his poor play:
“I was just in my feelings,” Darby said. “I got to grow up. I had a horrible game, probably one of the worst games I have ever played. And that ain’t nobody’s fault. People expect highly of us. I do apologize to you all, too, for that. That was childish.”
Most Eagles fans don’t care about Darby’s social media behavior, unless it in some way indicates that he can’t handle the mental demands of the NFL. Cornerback may be the most psychologically taxing position to play, and those who succeed typically have short memories.
“It wasn’t the first time I played bad,” Darby said. “I play corner. There could be games like when you cover tight on somebody, and they make a catch on you the whole game.”
Whenever he’s not practicing or on the field for football, backup quarterback Nate Sudfeld aims to make children’s lives better.
Off-day for the Flyers, but that doesn’t mean we can’t compare Ivan Provorov to Nicklas Lidstrom, right?
In the past few games, Nolan Patrick has started to make some strides with the Flyers.
The Phillies have brought back Rico Brogna and Wes Helms to help out as minor league coaches. They also named former Cubs third base coach Gary Jones as manager of the Lehigh Valley IronPigs.
One game in college hoops, as Loyola defeated Drexel 68-62. Kurk Lee had 20 points for the Dragons, while Austin Williams put up a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds.
Three games today, with Temple in Georgia to take on the Bulldogs at 1 PM on SEC Network, La Salle traveling to Bucknell at 7 PM, and top-ranked Villanova playing Hofstra in Uniondale at 8:30 PM on FS1.
In other sports news, legendary broadcaster Dick Enberg died at the age of 82.
Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope can play and practice in California while serving a 25-day prison sentence stemming from an incident back in March.
Former NBA referee Tim Donaghy was arrested after he threatened a man with a hammer.
The Seattle Seahawks were fined $100,00 after violating the league’s concussion protocol with Russell Wilson.
Florida State is playing in a bowl game they shouldn’t be playing in, thanks to a Reddit user.
WWE chairman and CEO Vince McMahon is selling $100 million worth of shares in order to start a new company, which might include a new pro football league.
Former New York Met Darryl Strawberry sometimes had sex in between innings during his playing career.
In the news, four people were shot in Southwest Philadelphia after a domestic dispute.
Papa John’s founder John Schnatter is stepping down as CEO of the company after he made controversial remarks about the national anthem protests by NFL players.
A government shutdown ain’t happening.
Life expectancy in the country dropped for the second straight year.
The past month for the Sixers, in one video:
Top night last night, but this has to be the highlight 😂😂😂 pic.twitter.com/yMqDvOoVML
— James Gower (@__gower) December 21, 2017