Let’s talk about Brett Brown and everything else that went wrong last night.
I’ll frame the article with this disclaimer:
One of the things that bugs me about Philadelphia sports fandom is that we tend to narrow our focus when looking to assign blame. For whatever reason, we insist on pinpointing one specific thing or one specific person when seeking accountability or trying to explain what went wrong over the course of a 60 or 48 minute game. We do it in football, when we say “the offense deserves the blame!” or “the defense deserves the blame!” or “the refs deserve the blame!” While identifiable mistakes might tip the scales towards one or more of those phases of the game, you know as well as I do that there is typically blame to go around when you suffer a bad loss in any sport. It’s very rarely ever on just one person or boiled down to one play.
To that point, there was a lot that went wrong in Chicago last night.
I watched the final five minutes of the game three times this morning and wrote down these bullet point problems:
- Robin Lopez was getting offensive rebounds against Mike Scott, who was playing center in the Sixers’ small ball look.
- The field goal drought went from 7:10 on the clock to the 3:29 mark. The only points they scored in that time frame were two Ben Simmons free throws.
- JJ Redick bad pass turnover looking for Scott
- some easy pick and roll switches put Zach LaVine in mismatches against Scott (the bigger, macro-level issue here is that the Sixers still really struggle against good guards)
- Redick misses wide-open three after Harris offensive rebound
- There was a defensive sequence where Redick got switched onto Lauri Markkanen, Tobias Harris got lost, and Otto Porter was wide-open for a game-tying three-pointer.
- Ben Simmons offensive foul while trying to set a screen (kind of a weird call)
- Butler offensive foul (I don’t know if this was an over the back, I thought he actually made a good play on the ball)
- Simmons lost the ball while driving 1v3 for some reason after a brilliant steal on the defensive end
- Scott’s foul on Lopez, which I’m not sure was a foul. He did get some forearm on him before the shot was taken.
- Blown switch on LaVine’s game-winning basket
- I didn’t like the final play call (the first one). Not sure if Ben was supposed to go to Harris there, but Butler was the target, he was closest to the rim, and his momentum was taking him away from the basket. On the second one, they didn’t run anybody at the rim at all and tried to get Jimmy on a heave.
Thoughts on those bullets after the jump: