Sunday, January 27, 2008

Yes, losing to the Knicks is bad...

As Louis points out in the comments to my last post, the Sixers recently lost to the Knicks.

Not so good.

And, more to the point, the loss to the Knicks didn't happen in isolation. After starting out the season doing quite well on defense, the Sixers have regressed badly. In the meantime, the offense has been consistently bad. I've generally been more bullish on the Sixers' chances this year than most of the experts (and Louis), but certainly their recent play hasn't done much to support my optimism.

Still, and you knew I needed to find some piece of information that meant my early season optimism hadn't been completely misplaced, as of today John Hollinger's automated power rankings have the Sixers ranked 22nd, coming in as the 11th ranked Eastern Conference team. Plus, based on the standings, the Sixers are still only 2 games out of the playoffs. While they've been very bad, the Sixers are still very much in the thick of the playoff race.

So talk of tanking might still be a bit premature...although maybe not for much longer!


Louis said...

I don't want the 76ers to make the playoffs. They gain nothing from making the playoffs because they have no chance of advancing. The only thing that happens if they make the playoffs, or barely miss them, is that the decrease their chances of getting someone in the draft who can come in and make an immediate impact. Let's let the bench get some real playing time so we can really get a sense of who's worth keeping around.

Louis said...

Shaq's Gone!

I am not sure this makes much of a difference considering how little he's played this year and how bad the Heat have been.

Still, if the 76ers still wanted to make the playoffs this could actually be a bad thing. We only have one game left against the heat and it's soon. That means that we would have played the Heat with a depleted Shaq and then the better Heat (with a stronger Shaq) would have played against the rest of the East and helped the Sixers in the standings. Now the Heat are better earlier... will they be good enough to overtake the sixers in the standings? They might be. This trade could be bad news for sixers fans hoping to make the playoffs this year. For those hoping for a high draft choice, this might be just was the lotto ordered.

Sam Cohen said...

If a team ten games behind us can catch up, then we aren't making the playoffs anyway. At 20-30 as of today, I think we'll need to go .500 for the rest of the season to make the playoffs. (Sad that 36-46 will probably get a team into the playoffs) As for those people (like you!) hoping for a high draft choice, what makes you think that having a worse record will actually mean we end up with the top pick? It hasn't worked out that way for many teams in the recent past.

Louis said...

While having a bad record does not guarantee a high draft choice, it does give us better odds of having a top draft choice. Making the playoffs with a losing record will, on the other hand, guarantee that we WON'T have a high draft choice.