And when my friend and I were
done we went to rest upon the
sun ’cause life takes from us
the things, we love and robs us
of the special ones and puts
them where where we can’t climb
and we only miss them all the time
— “Life Is Shit”
The Knicks head into Philly Friday night to face the Sixers. Although the Sixers are only a game and a half away from a playoff spot, they’re more likely to vie for a lottery spot than a playoff spot. Their second leading scorer, Glenn Robinson will need surgery on his elbow, and will likely miss the rest of the season. The Sixers could potentially face the Knicks without their two leading scorers, as leading scorer Allen Iverson has missed his team’s last two games with a sore right knee. There is no word on whether or not Iverson has practiced this week either.
Despite not having Iverson or Robinson, Philly has won its’ last three games. Two were against the league patsy Chicago, but the other was against a pretty good team in Milwaukee. Looking at the box score, it’s easy to see why the Bucks fell to the Sixers on Monday. First is that little used Zendon Hamilton and Greg Buckner dropped 39 points on them, 32 more than their season average. Second is the huge 14-4 advantage Philly had on the offensive boards. Finally Keith Van Horn played only 20 minutes for Milwaukee, before fouling out.
I wanted to see why the Sixers beat the Bulls twice. Looking at the stat sheet, the Sixers just shot at a better percentage each game. Most of the stats were the same. Yes they did have more defensive rebounds, but that’s because they had more attempts due to Chicago’s extra misses. (In other words each Bull miss=Philly defensive rebound). In one game Philly had almost twice as many turnovers, but Chicago shot itself out of the game with less than a 38% field goal percentage (40% AFG% for those that are curious).
Iverson has missed 20 games so far this year, and the Sixers are 8-12 without the Answer. No one person has taken up all of the scoring slack for Philadelphia during their latest injury-filled win streak. Kenny Thomas has done well, but they’ve also seen good performances from Hamilton, Buckner, Salmons, Snow, McKie, and even Kyle Korver. So even if Iverson doesn’t show up, the Knicks will have to be careful, since Philadelphia seems to be able to get points from a number of different people. The last time these two teams met, Tim Thomas and Nazr Mohammed combined for 27 rebounds. A repeat performance would be welcomed by one blogger, since I picked up Nazr for my fantasy squad.
Side Note: With the Knicks in Philadelphia, my thoughts go out to the friends and family of Dave Blood. Dave was the bassist for the iconoclastic Pennsylvania band the Dead Milkmen. Some of the happiest times of my life were spent playing his bass lines. Rest in peace, Dave.