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Tag:Evan Turner
Posted on: March 7, 2012 10:56 am
Edited on: March 7, 2012 2:40 pm
 

Sixers deny report regarding Turner issue

Evan Turner struggled off the bench in his first start this week. (Getty Images)
By Matt Moore

Update: Shock of all shocks, the Sixers and Turner deny any such problem to WIP Sports Radio. It seemed weird given that Turner's honestly played pretty well this season, but in either case, we've got the Sixers official take on the situation.

-----------------------

I know that headline is pretty much the vaguest thing you're ever going to read, but that's really the best way to describe this from CBS Philly: 
Stan Hochman, long-time writer for the Philadelphia Daily News, says that there’s a reason for Turner’s troubles. “There’s an explanation for Turner’s inconsistent play. One of these days, the team, with Turner’s permission, will reveal it. And then the criticism will back off,” he said during an interview with 94WIP’s Angelo Cataldi and The Morning Team on Wednesday.

Hochman indicated that the information was given to him with the knowledge that he would not reveal exactly what the problem is. He said that at some point this season, he believes it will be made public.
via Evan Turner's Mystery Problem « CBS Philly.

Turner shot 1-12 in his first starting spot this week, despite having played really well off the bench. Now it could have just been one of those games. It could have been a shock to the system for him to start. Turner has shown without a doubt he's going to be a quality player in the league after a rough start to his rookie season, but this kind of vague talk is at least a little concerning.

Now, this could be an exaggeration. Teasing something like that requires no risk for the writer and paints a picture without signing your name at the bottom. Then fans and media.... like this blog, take it and interpret it in ways which are in no way relevant to what's actually going on. But if nothing else it serves as a reminder that we like to look at players' efforts to being isolated to on-court matters, and that in reality, as with anyone's life, there are a number of factors, personal, professional, and medical playing into each player's performance.
Posted on: December 9, 2011 7:23 pm
 

Sixers re-sign Thaddeus Young

By Matt Moore  

You can't blame the Sixers, they got their guy. The Sixers have been making noise about intending to match any offer for forward Thaddeus Young in restricted free agency, and instead of letting it get to that point, the Sixers signed Young on Friday to a five-year, $43 million deal, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer

And it's a steal.

Young blossomed under coach Doug Collins. Last season he pulled in 17.6 points and 7.3 rebounds per 36 minutes, which is a terrific rate for a bench combo forward. His stellar 18.4 PER is a reflection of his increased efficiency on the floor, and his career high 54 percent field goal percentage was as much a reflection of his move away from perimeter play to attacking the rim as anything. In short, a player who once very strongly considered himself a small forward has evolved into a true combo forward. 

The only question is, what are the Sixers really planning on with this signing? They currently have Andre Iguodala, Evan Turner, Craig Brackins, Elton Brand, and Marreese Speights at forward. It's not that Young will have a hard time getting minutes. He won't. It's that the Sixers have made a significant committment to a number of players at forward and have yet to set out a plan for how to build a team around them. Maybe the answer is for Young to become a true (undersized) power forward alongside Iguodala and Turner. Perhaps they just love the production off the bench. But it's an $8 million per year investment for a team that still seems to be struggling with its identity.

Young needs improvement but at least has the years ahead of him to work into it. His rebounding isn't stellar but it's quality for his position. He's the quintessential combo forward, but that comes with a price, especially when you lack range as Young does. He shot 33 percent from 10-15 feet and 34 percent from mid-range last season. If Young's going to be a stretch four, he's going to have to improve. The Sixers giving him this deal with their current roster situation means he's going to have to develop them sooner rather than later. 

Again, there's no way to fault them for the deal. Young is 23 and on potential alone would warrant that kind of deal on the open market. The question is not whether it was a good signing. The question is what the signing means.  
Posted on: July 20, 2011 9:21 am
Edited on: July 20, 2011 9:33 am
 

Sixers' Turner dedicates summer to working on J

By Matt Moore

Evan Turner didn't exactly look like the No. 2 overall pick last year for Philadelphia. He wasn't terrible, by any stretch of the imagination. He just didn't seem special, which is your biggest concern with a player like Turner, older than some of the prospects behind him.

Turner showed some progress as the year went on but was then inexplicably benched during the Sixers' late run to ensure the playoffs for Andres Nocioni (we're still trying to figure that one out),. He then managed to play fairly impressively against the Heat in the Sixers' first-round exit. But it was clear there was room for Turner to improve. 

And Turner knows it.

CSNPhilly brings us the report that Turner has been working with "shot doctor" Herb Magee on getting his percentage back to where it was in college. From CSNPhilly:
“He is a good shooter, actually a very good shooter,” Magee stressed. “We go 15 feet, we go off the dribble, we go foul line and he is very effective. His problem is when he steps back to three his guide hand is in the way, so we have been working on it from the vantage point of shooting the 15-, 16-footer the same way we shoot the 22.9 shot.”

“Everybody had told me what a terrific fellow he was,” Magee said. “He may be an even better guy than people told me. This does not work unless he is into it and if he wasn’t into it we wouldn’t have made it past the first day, but he is into it. He’s a smart guy, he asks good questions and he wants to get better. It is going to be successful.”
via 'Shot Doctor' Magee working with Sixers' Turner.

The Sixers need Turner to produce offensively to justify finally moving Andre Iguodala, a good offensive weapon. But since Turner is unlikely to wind up as the all-around producer Iguodala is, he'll need to compensate with pure offense. And that means knocking down j's since he doesn't have the body or experience to produce in other ways yet. It's good to see Turner focusing on this part of his game during the lockout, as he needs such a big jump.

The post also says Turner is pursuing his degree from Ohio State, just as many NBA players are working on their degrees with all this free time on their hands. Idle hands, and what not. Turner is working to set himself up well in the league for years to come, in ways both on and off the court.

For a young player suddenly without a team, trying to find his NBA identity, that's the best angle he can have. Positive signs all for Sixers fans. 

Posted on: June 6, 2011 12:13 pm
Edited on: June 6, 2011 12:28 pm
 

NBA players play the newlywed game on Kimmel

Posted by Royce Young



How well do you know your teammate? A simple question, but when put in the format of the Jimmy Kimmel show, good results are sure to follow.

Kimmel asked Evan Turner, Andre Iguodala, Greg Oden and LaMarcus Aldridge "newlywed game" type of questions. For instance, did you know Turner plays with his belly button during practice? Or that Oden's favorite thing about a woman is "that she's a woman." Deep, Greg.

(I think my favorite thing about this is Oden's face as he downs that ice cream sundae. Hilarious.)

Via Blazers Edge
Posted on: April 28, 2011 12:14 am
Edited on: April 28, 2011 1:04 am
 

Heat-Sixers Series Recap: Heat a step above

Chris Bosh leads the way (?!) as the Heat close out the Sixers and advance to meet their destiny versus the nemesis, the Boston Celtics
Posted by Matt Moore




It wasn't pretty, it wasn't perfect, it was closer than it should have been. But the Heat have closed out the Sixers, and advance to the second round. The clutch hero was naturally... Joel Anthony?! Moving on, here's how this series wrapped up. 

Series MVP: Chris Bosh. Who would have thought the most-criticized of the Triad would step up like this? 19.8 points per game for Bosh, and he finally showed the kind of aggression you would have hoped to have seen more of this season. Bosh found Elton Brand at the elbow, and Brand was too old to match him in speed, and not big enough to match his length. Bosh was consistently aggressive, and it paid off. The Sixers were supposed to have a better set at the 4-5 matchup, and instead, Bosh, alongside Joel Anthony, turned it. Like a Bosh.

It was over when: Game 2 when the Heat blew them out. The Sixers had shown life in Game 1, but Game 2 really showed that the talent differential was too great. The seeds of doubt were cast then. The Heat made the statement and it held through for a five-game win. 

Goat of the Series: Andre Iguodala. Iguodala had his best game of the series in Game 5, but also shot 32 percent in the other four games. And on the key possession for the Sixers late in the game, after nailing huge shot after huge shot, Iguodala missed a pull-up jumper. The Sixers needed Iggy to take it to another level in this series, which was obviously a tough matchup. That's the playoffs, though, and he couldn't get it done. Iguodala will be a superb 2nd to 3rd best player on possibly a championship team. But as "the guy" he's just not a good fit. 

Going forward, the Sixers should: Feel good about the progress they've made. Their first year under Doug Collins they made a miraculous turnaround, made the playoffs, won a game, and developed some good young talent. It may be time to cash in Iguodala as a building block and move towards Evan Turner. Especially after Turner's performance in the playoffs, dealing Iguodala makes sense, and would net them a huge array of talent. Jrue Holiday looks legit, as does Lou Williams, and Turner. With Brand getting back to decent performance, even at his age, a better starting center would set their future up nicely. They still need a star player, but sometimes the search for those takes time. 

Going forward, the Heat should: Be grateful they didn't blow this one. Pushing this to a Game 6 in Philadelphia would have sent up "Oh My God, the Heat are choking again!" panic attacks. They now get time to prepare for Game 1 against Boston on Sunday. And they're going to need it. The Heat had so much momentum going into Game 4 and lost some of it. Even Game 5 felt like more of an exhalation than a victory roar. The Heat took care of business. Now the real playoffs begin for them. 

Winners: Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, Joel Anthony, Mario Chalmers, Doug Collins, Jrue Holiday, Elton Brand, Thaddeus Young

Losers: LeBron James, Andre Iguodala, Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Spencer Hawes, Mike Bibby

Posted on: April 14, 2011 12:19 pm
Edited on: April 14, 2011 3:34 pm
 

Sixers-Heat Preview: It's another tequila sunrise

The 2011 NBA Eastern Conference First-Round Playoffs roll on as we take a look at Sixers-Heat
Posted by Matt Moore



I. Intro

The Sixers are a nice story. They really are. Doug Collins pulled this team up by the bootstraps and once it got done punching itself in the face, it came together. They're a solid defensive team with some speed and youth at key positions. Pesky might be the word. 

The Heat are the big story. We've seen them show flashes of brilliance, but those all came in-between prolonged periods of malaise and incoherence. Everyone wants to see if this team has that extra gear. It's assumed with great playoff teams. But this team doesn't have that experience, not together. How are they going to react to when the games start to matter? Will the sleeping giant awaken, or will the playoffs just prove to be yet another challenge the heat fail to pass with flying colors?

The Sixers are swamped in matchups thanks to the talent on the Heat , which is going to make tactical decisions that much more important. The Heat need to look great to get some confidence. The Sixers just need to hang. 

II. What Happened: A Look at the Season Series

The Heat crushed them. I mean, killed them. It was a slaughter. The Heat averaged a 109.2 offensive efficiency and allowed just a 98.3. That's pretty impressive for the Heat/terrible for the Sixers on both sides of the ball. They outscored the Sixers by an average of 10.3 points, and shot 47 percent. 

There is some context, though, here. The Sixers had a horrific start to the season, and two of the games in the season series were during that span. The third game was in late March when the Heat were at their strongest and the Sixers were cooling down.  So we haven't really seen the Heat play the Sixers except when the Sixers were a mess. Philadelphia did manage its closest efficiency differential in the second game, when they were starting to figure things out, losing by just nine. All in all, the Heat definitely have the upper hand in this matchup, but the first glance doesn't tell you everything you need to know. 

III. The Easy Stuff: Dwyane Wade is a problem

Wade averaged 25.5 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 4.6 assists this season overall. Against Philadelphia, he averaged 30.7 points, 8.0 rebounds, and 6.7 assists. That's a one-man wrecking crew. The Sixers have no one to guard him, in reality. Not without going into a flex-big lineup with both Iguodala and Young on the floor, but that rotation hasn't played much together this season. The Sixers did use that lineup in the three games agianst the Heat, but that was really where Wade killed them. 

Looking at the Game Flows from Popcornmachine.net , the Sixers had their worst problems with Wade when Lou Williams was guarding him. This is problematic, as Williams is their truest shooting guard with any scoring impact. Jodie Meeks on the other hand held Wade to his two lowest-impact quarters. Even rookie Evan Turner did decent work against him. Andres Nocioni should not see any floor time in this series, but you probably knew that. He will. 

Wade's a stellar player, but his biggest game was a 39 point effort in March. In that game, his two biggest quarters were the 2nd and 4th, where he dropped 37 of his 39 points. In those two quarters, Meeks played just under eight minutes total. Meeks needs to be central part of the Sixers' defensive design or Wade's going to slice them into little tiny pieces and eat them with Sriracha. 

III. Secret of the Series: Help, (the Sixers) need somebody, help, not just any body

According to Synergy Sports, in the Sixers' best effort against the Heat, Philadelphia brought help or committed to the ball handler on the pick and role 22 of 29 times, or 76 percent. In their other losses, the Sixers only brought help 29 of 52 times, or 56 percent of the time.  In the Sixers' best effort against Miami, the Heat ran 28 Isolation plays, versus 34 combined in the other two games. You getting the pattern? This sounds simple, make the Heat get out of their offense, right? 

But what it means is that the Sixers need to commit to help defense, even if it exposes them to open jumpers. If they bring help on pick and rolls and on James and Wade in Isolation, that means there will be jump-passes to wide open threes from Mike Bibby, James Jones, Mike Miller, and Mario Chalmers. Fine. You live with that. The Sixers don't need to have a Celtics-like commitment to defensie principles. If they make mistakes in over-helping that leaves them unable to rotate, that's fine. Just keep the Triad in front of them. Making mistakes are fine as long as they're the right mistakes. The Sixers' offense is going to struggle. There's just no way around it. The Sixers' best shot is making the game into a defensive grind, keeping it close or making a late run to make it close, then try and push for transition buckets off of Heat miscommunication. 

But to do that they have to bring help, a lot of of help. 


IV. The Dinosaur Narrative: "WILL LeBron James WILT IN THE PLAYOFFS AGAIN?"

Last year's playoff series still lingers in people's minds. They remember the way James appeared to capitulate to the Celtics, to abandon his team. So now he's been branded with this narrative. 

The Sixers are not the Celtics. And furthermore, it's not like James has never won a playoff series. He's got a strong history of success in the playoffs, albeit without the "biggest" of series, which is always the last one you play. But trying to extrapolate James' struggles against the best defense in the NBA over the past three years into a narrative about his relative success is overblown. We're not talking Tracy McGrady, here. James has done his fair share of blowing first-round teams off the map, and the Sixers are likely to be next.  V. The Line-Item Veto: Who has control in each matchup? Quick, line by line. Ex. SG: Dwyane Wade versus Jodie Meeks isn't really fair. Meks has good length but Wade is just... Wade.

VI. The Line-Item Veto: Who wins each matchup?

PG: This could be Jrue Holiday's coming-out party. Bibby's not nearly fast enough to stick him, and Chalmers isn't aware enough to watch him off-ball. Problem will arise when the Heat go no-point, and he has to defend Wade. Doug Collins will be making a lot of subs in this series. 

SG: We already talked about how Meeks can have an impact on this series. But c'mon. It's Dwyane freaking Wade and he dropped 30 per game on this team. 

SF: Andre Igoudala seems like a really nice guy, doesn't he? Great leader for Team USA this weekend. /whistles ... It's LeBron.

PF: Split. Bosh is better offensively, but Elton Brand may eat him alive on the boards. If Brand goes way-back-machine mode, the Heat may have to send help. That starts trouble for the Heat, even as mediocre as the Sixers are from the perimeter (15th in 3-point percentage). 

C: Doesn't this feel like a matchup where both teams fans are going to look at the other center and go "Man, I wish we had that guy!" only neither center is really good? Hawes gets the edge here, but if Joel Anthony keeps playing like he has lately, he might get the push.

Bench: Sixers win this one strong. Thaddeus Young has been a sixth-man of the year candidate, and the Sixers have the fourth best bench in the league, according to Hoopsstats.com .

Coach:  Well, considering Doug Collins is a Coach of the Year candidate and Erik Spoelstra had to put a marker on his parkig spot to make sure no one took it before he was canned, I think we're going to give Collins the advantage here. 


VII. Conclusion

There's not a tougher series to peg. Know why? You know what to expect out of every team in the playoffs except Miami. Denver may be outmatched, but they'll bring it. The Pacers are out of their league, but they won't just roll over and die. The Celtics are in disarray, but you know they'll be mentally ready. Same with the Lakers. Miami? They could sink the Sixers' battleship in the first game and never let them recover. They could lose the first game. They could start strong then get lazy. There's just no way of predicting this team's effort game-to-game. 

I flipped on this prediction six times. I started out with your standard 2-2-2 6-game set. Then I went all wacky and went to a seven game series with fans and media talking about how terrible the Heat are, and could they lose in the first round. Then I walked it back to a sweep. Then back to a six-gamer. Then I thought maybe a gentleman's sweep (5 games, you give 'em one out of being polite). But I keep coming back to that Heat team that lost to mediocre team after mediocre team this season. Except Philly. Which either means the Sixers have no chance or they're due. I have absolute faith in Miami winnning. I just have no faith in them winning comfortably. Prediction: Heat in 6.

VIII. CBSSports.com Video Preview

Can the Philadelphia 76ers contend with the all-star talent on the Miami Heat when they face off in round 1 of the NBA Playoffs? Ian Eagle and Ken Berger breakdown this upcoming playoff matchup.

Posted on: April 4, 2011 9:31 am
Edited on: April 4, 2011 12:37 pm
 

Lou Williams out with hamstring, Daniels signed

Posted by Royce Young

Lou Williams suffered a strained right hamstring Saturday against Milwaukee and as a result will miss the rest of the regular season for Philadelphia. He said he hopes to be back for the playoffs.

That's not good for the 76ers.

Williams has quietly been a huge part of their really solid bench, providing stablility and scoring. Without him, Philadelphia is losing almost 14 points per game and a player that can spark the Sixers when things aren't going well.

So what have they done to try and make up for it? According to ESPN.com, veteran Antonio Daniels is getting a call-up from the D-League. Daniels has been trying to make a comeback through the D-League and just finished up a solid regular season in which he helped lead the expansion Texas Legends to the playoffs.

But here's the interesting part about all this: What does this say about Evan Turner? Now of course technically Turner is a shooting guard and Williams a point. So Daniels is being signed to a 10-day because of the need for point guard depth. But Turner's season has been really inconsistent, and here's a chance for him to step in and show some versatility. Instead, he'll likely see a shot at extra minutes go to a veteran D-Leaguer. Ouch.

Williams actually called Turner to "get his mind right"
about filling in those extra minutes, so it's likely Daniels is just an insurance policy. Because it's time for Turner to step in and fill those big minutes. The Sixers haven't seen the development of Turner they'd like, but here's a chance for some extended minutes.

The Sixers are in pretty good shape to seal up the six-seed and just officially wrapped up a surprising playoff berth. But if they want to make a little noise in the playoffs, they need Williams. He's a Sixth Man award honorable mention type of player because of his scoring, shooting and creating off the bench.
Posted on: January 25, 2011 1:02 pm
 

Things are looking up in Philly for the Sixers

Posted by Royce Young

Less than a month ago, the 76ers were reportedly talking about putting just about everyone on the block, including bedrock player Andre Iguodala. He was rumored to be part of a potential three-way Carmelo Anthony deal and was talked about possibly being sent somewhere for high draft picks.

Basically, the 76ers were ready to blow up their core and start over. Again.

Except they started winning. And lucky for them, they happen to be in the Eastern conference where even if you have only 10 wins, you're still sort of in the playoff hunt.

As a result, all that talk of trading Iguodala and Elton Brand is being put away for now as the Sixers make a little playoff push. A report from Sporting News says:

The playoff push has clearly lifted the Sixers’ outlook. According sources around the league, Philadelphia is not eager to make major roster changes now, and both Iguodala and Brand are all but certain to be with the team throughout this season.

That’s just fine with the players. “In the beginning of the year, we had new guys, we had a new coach, we weren’t really playing up to our ability,” said Brand, who is having his best season as a Sixer with averages of 15.0 points, 8.7 rebounds and 51.4 percent shooting from the field. “But we knew we were a better team than that. I think everyone here wanted a chance to show what we can do.”

Right now, Philadelphia sits in seventh at 19-25 and is just four games behind the Knicks for sixth. The Sixers started the season 3-13, but went 8-7 in December and are 6-5 so far in January.

Plus, Iguodala, who started extremely slow, is coming around finally. He's scoring better and scoring efficiently, plus is playing quality defense on top of rebounding from his 2-guard spot. Brand is quietly averaging 15.0 points and 8.7 rebounds per game, which is one of his better seasons in a few years. He's healthy and he's showing he still has something left.

Then there's the marked improvement from Thaddeus Young who is a legitimate Sixth Man of the Year candidate and Jrue Holliday who has taken a big step forward this year. Evan Turner, the second overall pick, has been inconsistent, but on given nights shows off real ability to score and create.

Doug Collins was hired by the Sixers with a reputation for turning young teams around and he's doing exactly that. The 76ers have a real shot at postseason play and with the way they are improving, might actually find themselves with a decent seed. They can get to a spot above .500. They're only six games off that right now.

They're young, inexperienced and still lose games they shouldn't. They still haven't figured out how to win consistently on the road. But the past two months have convinced management to hang on for a little while and keep this current group going.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com