Sixers’ Unexpected Run Comes To An End





BOSTON – No one thought the Philadelphia 76ers would make it this far. And no one gave them much of a chance in Game 7 either.

But there they were, down three with the ball and a little more than four minutes to go in the fourth quarter. Paul Pierce had just fouled out, and you had to think the Sixers had a shot.

It turned out, instead, that Rajon Rondo had a shot. And when Rondo beats you with a long two and a long three, and when Ray Allen finally connects on a couple of shots from beyond the arc after missing his first five, you might just have to shrug your shoulders and realize it just wasn’t your day.

The Sixers could look back at Game 7 and the series as a whole, and choose to remember the turnovers and missed free throws. They shot 24-for-30 from the free throw line on Saturday and just 69 percent in the series. These seven games were downright ugly and the Sixers struggled to score throughout. So to not take advantage of every trip to the line is just shooting yourself in the foot.

“It’s just our inability to score that’s sort of plagued us throughout the season,” Sixers coach Doug Collins said.

But Philly also had their positive moments to look back on. They out-executed the veteran Celtics in three of the seven games. Their young players certainly gained a ton of valuable big-game experience. And they learned that if you play hard, play together, and play defense, you can go further than you should otherwise.

That’s really what this Sixers team should be remembered for. If you can overlook the missed free throws, they made the most of what they had. They were a great defensive team without a dominating big man. And they were a decent enough offensive team without a go-to guy.

Really, teams without stars aren’t supposed to take teams with four stars to seven games in the conference semifinals, but the Sixers did. They played the Celtics’ style and almost matched them defensive stop for defensive stop.

“The Sixers are a pain in the ass,” Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. “They are a tough basketball team.”

Sure, things would likely have been different if Derrick Rose didn’t tear his ACL in the first game of this postseason. But that doesn’t mean the Sixers didn’t earn their way here.

“It was a good run,” Jrue Holiday said. “We fought to the end.”

36 Comments

  1. again veteran celtics wins against young atlanta and phili legs. never doubt the celtics! they beat the heat 3 out of four times this regular season with bosh. and they had a good fight with the spurs. Celtics can do it. A championship is within reach

  2. Congrats to sixers and coach collins!Great run!

  3. Reef says:

    SIXERS:
    What good is defense if you are not a good offensive shooting team? They need more aggressive and accurate shooting players. SHARP SHOOTERS, GOOD CENTER AND BETTER FREE THROWS ARE NEEDED.

  4. Reef says:

    70Sixer’s need a Star and some sharp shooters. A good Center won’t hurt either. Andre Igudala fumbles the ball too much and fails at free throws too much that hurt them when the games are close.Unless the get some no beat up veterans or young double PPG players they will only be a local city entertaining team.

  5. kopddd says:

    they went all the way with the Celts to Game 7 and surely sent chills down the spines of even the most hardened Celtics fan. I respect the Celtics but I honestly think it will be a OKC-Miami Thriller down the line.

  6. jio says:

    Both teams ousted the 1st seed in the First round before bowing out of contention in seven games on the second round. It’s an experience that will preciously build their momentum for next year’s run. Thanks, Philly, for the surprising and awesome run you made in the playoffs. You are no pushovers now and has absolutely gain the respect of the league.

  7. rigor mortiz says:

    congratz to the Sixers you guys have a good job, nice series,even though some people didn’t believe that this team will go farther than their expected, good luck for next year

  8. Sixersrespect says:

    COngrats to the Sixers. You are an inspiring team. You showed how playing with such heart and intensity can be inspiring. What an inspiration! Thank you for that season. I wish you the best next year. Don’t worry, MIAMI WILL TEAR THE CELTICS UP FOR YOU.

  9. cris says:

    give them credit for what? they are just lucky that rose is injured next season if they face the bulls again lets see what is that credit you guys are talkin

  10. RondoisGod says:

    Kudos to the Sixers for a great series, they still need some upgrades and experience to be a title contender though. If Iggy would be playing the same way 2-3 years from now and hopefully the Sixers gets at least 1 consistent superstar, a championship wouldn’t be as impossible as now.

  11. marven king says:

    Great game for both team.If sixers can get a true 3-point shooter then they will be a hard team to beat.

  12. bu says:

    Yes, Sixers earned every minute of the 2 round of actions. Obv Bulls & Celts are no where near full strength & Sixers much healthier. However, you still need to make things happen & win the game.

    At the end of the postgame press con, Collins said clearly Sixers roster will certainly be dif. They need to upgrade certain positions to find more potent offense (& decent if not good defense.) Their defensive system is fine. X’s & O’s under Collins is good. Just need 1-2 steady scorer.

    Atlantic division will be v interesting next yr wl Knicks & Sixers really to make a move as Celts may breakup for rebuilding.

  13. Vincent says:

    This is how a basketball team should be, playing collectively. I hope that this kind of culture will stay in the sixers for a long time because this is the right approach to the game of basketball. They will definitely gain experience from their playoff run and hopefully they’ll go more further in the playoffs next season.

  14. king kuppa! says:

    great season for phila there are young guns make a trade to Magic and bring Dwight Howard retain holiday and 100% team contender.

  15. Ted says:

    Salute to the Sixers. It still amazing how they won the series against the Bulls even though Rose and Noah were out. And i thought they will be out at 6. But they made it to game 7 and down to the closing moments of game 7. It is a bright future for them. They just badly need a go-to-guy. Having everyone scoring is good but at times when you badly need to score, you need a go-to-guy. You cannot win a championship with your highest scoring guy is averaging 14 ppg.

  16. M says:

    Mad props to the sixers!

  17. ive been watching the celtics since the series this year starts! and i notice the a lot of people are keep thinking they will not make it even to semis , but look at them now everyone was shocked but dont include me to those person, they got the potential to be there, look! , they are the only team who can handle so much pressure under injuries of their players. Doc Rivers is a genius!, unlike the other team, they accept weaknesses when problem comes in like injuries, team mates issues, arguing and pointing out who did the mistakes during the play. GREEN makes every problem a stepping stone and a challenge not to make an excuse. GO GREEN!!

    give our Doc the championship trophy! :D

  18. ive been watching the celtics since the series this year starts! and i notice the a lot of people are keep thinking they will not make it even to semis , but look at them now everyone was shocked but dont include me to those person, they got the potential to be there, look! , they are the only team who can handle so much pressure under injuries of their players. Doc Rivers is a genius!, unlike the other team, they accept weaknesses when problem comes in like injuries, team mates issues, arguing and pointing out who did the mistakes during the play. GREEN makes every problem a stepping stone and a challenge not to make an excuse. GO GREEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • OKCpinoyFAN says:

      It was just the Celts day and that’s it. Rondo stepped up when they needed him the most and the Sixers just couldn’t find any answer. I know you are a big Celts fan but I think the Sixers should earn your respect because for such a young team without any superstars, without any veterans with championship, even playoff experience, they went all the way with the Celts to Game 7 and surely sent chills down the spines of even the most hardened Celtics fan. I respect the Celtics but I honestly think it will be a OKC-Miami Thriller down the line. I still wish the best for the C’s Big Three because I think they won’t be staying for long.

      P.S. Dude, this is like an international site, the grammar police is just around the corner. Might wanna improve on it. lol.

      • Retro Silk says:

        It is unwise to dismiss San Antonio especially before game one has even been played.
        Your looking too far ahead!
        When your Thunder gave up home court advantage to the veteran Spurs…
        I think they sealed their fate.
        Spurs in 5!
        Go Green!

      • Retro Silk says:

        See what I mean? That was a fourth quarter collapse if Iv’e ever seen one!
        Ohh and is this “like” an international site or is it an international site?
        Get back to basics son!
        F U N D A M E N T A L S!

  19. Bok says:

    Props to SIxers. It’s gonna be a painful process but once they undergo the full process, they’ll be a team to beat and a potential championship team. I just hope that they stick together.

  20. Jay says:

    If Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah didn’t get injured, the sixers wouldn’t have come this far, and we would have seen a rematch between the Bulls and Heat

    • Peter says:

      Noah maybe, but Rose is so damn overrated it makes me laugh, Chicago were just as good without him in the regular season, he may as well not even have been there.

      He’s just an athletic kid who scores because he chucks up stupid amouts of shot attempts. He’s average as a pure PG, he doesn’t have a complete offensive game and he’s an average defender.

  21. ZIp says:

    Sixers are a great, young team. Stay healthy and stay humble and they could be the Thunder of the East.

    • marlon green says:

      Thunder of the east? The Thunder have 3 definite all-stars and one if not 2 of them will start every all star game until he retires. The sixers have too many of the same type of players. And for the record no more comparison’s with the Thunder okay?

  22. Mr. Fusion says:

    I tip my hat off to the Sixers, giving us a great series showing their potential against hardened veterans. Hopefully, the Eastern Finals is as exciting!

  23. Objectivity says:

    Of course they were not a championship team, but for such a young team (Holiday is 21 years old, Turner and T. Young are also very very young) this is surely a great learning experience, makes me wonder if it’ll help them in the future.

  24. QUEEN LEBRON says:

    I gave my salute to Sixers. But they need to face the truth that their team is still not a title contender team, I am Iggy fan but they still need to upgrade their team.

  25. RC says:

    Philly was this year’s version of the last year’s Memphis Grizzlies. Both teams ousted the 1st seed in the First round before bowing out of contention in seven games on the second round. It’s an experience that will preciously build their momentum for next year’s run. Thanks, Philly, for the surprising and awesome run you made in the playoffs. You are no pushovers now and has absolutely gain the respect of the league. :)))

  26. Peter says:

    Full credit to the 76ers for their metal toughness, a rarity in such a young group. When Boston blew them out by nearly 20 ponts in game three, then came out with a 20 point lead early in game 4 I honestly expected the 76ers young group to lose confidence and give up. They came back though, and from that moment on they fought to the end.

    Credit to the Celtics also for never letting the obstacles defeat them – to fight through all of those injuries along with father time and grit out a victory. Most of all credit to both teams for plying a series that was ultra competitive, yet at the same time so clean – it’s refreshing after the circus that was Miami-Indiana.

  27. Hctub says:

    Go green……

  28. Rhok says:

    Good job to the Celtics, and mad props to the Sixers.

  29. Bev says:

    Congrats to the Sixers for a great series.
    Bev

    • mr know says:

      Great series are you kidding me! they had an awful series with crummy players and coaches. i am so happy they didnt win.