Sixers Lack Continuity, But Still Deep

PHILADELPHIA — In getting off to a hot start last season, the Philadelphia 76ers had two big advantages over other teams. The first was continuity. They had made minimal changes to their roster and brought back guys who played an incredible 99 percent of their minutes from the previous season.

The second advantage was depth. The Sixers didn’t go 10 or 11-deep, but they had three or four guys coming off their bench – namely Evan Turner, Lou Williams and Thaddeus Young – who could keep the scoreboard going in the right direction. That trio was especially strong offensively, and the Sixers outscored their opponents by almost eight points per 100 possessions when the three were on the floor together.

“We had three guys coming off our bench who were capable of being starters,” Sixers coach Doug Collins said at training camp on Friday.

Turner eventually did become a starter. And that should be a permanent thing this year. The Sixers don’t have nearly the same continuity as they had last year (only 45 percent of last year’s minutes were played by guys on this year’s roster), but they should once again have little drop-off, especially offensively, when they go to their bench.

Thus far in camp, Collins has pointed to a nine-man rotation. On the perimeter, he has Jrue Holiday, Jason Richardson, Turner, Dorell Wright and Nick Young. And inside he has Andrew Bynum, Spencer Hawes, Thaddeus Young and Lavoy Allen.

“I don’t know who’s going to end up starting,” Collins said, “but at the end of the day, if you’ve got Nick Young coming off the bench, if you’ve got Dorell Wright coming off the bench, and Thad if he comes off the bench, and let’s say Lavoy comes off the bench, that’s pretty potent.”

And the Sixers’ bench could go deeper than that. Kwame Brown is a capable bench big, who ran with the first team in Bynum’s absence on Friday. Royal Ivey is a specialist, who can be used to pester opposing point guards. And rookie Arnett Moultrie has impressed in camp. He’s got an NBA-ready body and could be this year’s Lavoy Allen, a solid and skilled big man taken with a late draft pick.

“Our guys 9-14,” Collins said, “we feel confident any of those guys can get in there and play. That’s a nice feeling to have, especially to help you, if you have injuries, to be able to continue to play well.”

The injuries are already here. Bynum may miss the entire preseason with a bone bruise in his right knee. And Thaddeus Young left practice on Friday with a sprained left ankle.

In this league, you can never have too many guys who can play.


  1. KOBE BRYANT says:

    DWIGHT>chandler GASOL>stat m.w.pbrewer,smith? NASH>felton. just letting you know that if you think knicks will win this year think about it

  2. KOBE BRYANT says:

    DWIGHT>chandler GASOL>stat m.w.pbrewer,smith? NASH>felton

  3. YAYA says:

    The sixers have a quality team, but looking at them to get to a conference finals against Miami is a huge stretch to say the least. They still have to defend Lebron and Wade on the perimeter and i dont see that happening with Richardson and whoever else they picked up. The match up well against Boston but i think eventually the depth of Boston beats them out, they will be fighting for 3rd or 4th in the east is my prediction.

  4. TTKIN says:

    They have a good chance of being second in the East if they play right. Them getting Bynum really helped a lot if he takes it seriously.

  5. AI says:

    They can even beat the Knicks on 1st round.

  6. Juzz says:

    The one thing they are missing in their rotation is a quality backup point guard. Lou Williams is a player they really shouldnt have given away

  7. Dougie says:

    Thaddeus Young SHOULD start this year

  8. ko0kie says:

    jrue holiday and evan turner have to take their game to the next level for the sixers to be contenders in the east… I like the additions of richardson and wright.. they give the sixers that 3-point threat that they were missing. and of course.. andrew bynum has to stay healthy 😉

  9. alex says:

    WAYYYYY too many players who demand the ball, and beyond Iman Shumpert, and Tyson Chandler no one else will even try to play defense. Well J-Kidd may try but his knees will get in the way of his effort. Knicks go 4 games over .500 and everyone will be wondering why everything didnt fit together just like they did last year and the decade before that. Face it Knicks fans as long as James “Total Douche” Dolan runs your team you’ll be picking 15th or 16th in every draft til the day he dies

  10. Amused says:

    Sure, the Sixers are a decent team and made good moves over the summer, but they still have Miami, Boston, Indy, and New York ahead of them, with Brooklyn probably better than the Sixers as well. That puts Philly pretty much exactly where they were last year, at 6th seed for the playoffs. So for all the depth and potency, they’re no closer to moving up in the standings. Fortunately for them, Chicago and Atlanta are unlikely to be anywhere near as good this year, so the Sixers’ hold on Sixth should be pretty secure.

    • Bizzman23 says:

      Indy is the most overrated team in the east. MIA is def the team to beat, Sixers will surprise the league when they are facing the heat in the conference finals. The Knicks can not keep up with the young and athletic guards, the penetration is going to be too much for the Knicks with chandler getting his A$$ handed to him by Bynum. The Nets will not be better than the Sixers, still don’t see them being as good as the Sixers, but possibly better than the Pacers. See the Pacers lack heart and it showed last year against MIA, that Pacers team was built to beat MIA, but didn’t take advantage. This SIXERS TEAM is built to compete with MIA, but we will see just how good the east will match up with the Heat. LETS GO SIXERS.

      • Amused says:

        Well, you’ve made some interesting, if specious, arguments against the Pacers, Knicks, and Nets, but you still haven’t explained precisely how the Sixers will surprise everyone by getting to the Eastern Conference Finals. Aren’t you forgetting a certain very experienced and very balanced team known as the Celtics?

      • BIGMatta23 says:

        good word specious…

      • Mytownla says:

        Bro lol your predictions… you have many… Cpnference finals??? Sooo… your sixers are automatically better than Brooklyn, NY, and Boston? lmao you got jokes homie.

  11. dattebayo says:

    The Knicks have a deep bench, the Nets just bought many good/great individual talents and the Celtics are healthy and much deeper than last year. If Melo and Amare finally share the ball on offense and help out rebounding, the Knicks will be a great defensive team and dangerous on offense. Those two are not great defenders, but Chandler and Camby are some serious rim protectors and when Shumpert comes back, they will have a lockdown defender for guards. The Celtics are along with Miami contenders for representing the East. Jeff Green and Jason Terry are great scorers, Rondo, KG and Pierce are still Allstars and the Celtics now have several options for the 5 spots with 2 rookies, Wilcox and Darko (doubt he will play at all). They will be a great defensive team like usual and they upgraded their roster and added a lot of depth. I don’t think Philly will get a better spot than 4th in their division and they might not even make the playoffs.

    I don’t think Andrews knees will be allright playing 40 minutes a game while working twice as hard on offence and having to score because they expect him to.

    • JDub says:

      Your grammer is just as poor as your judgement. If you do not think the sixers have a chance to make the playoffs, then I do not think you know much about the game.

      • Mytownla says:

        Stop nominating yourself as the grammer police. U act like dude had a bunch of mispelled words or something

      • dattebayo says:

        English is not my native language but I think my grammar (yeah, that’s how you spell it) is decent enough to get my points across. And if you think “might not make the playoffs” equals “do not have a chance to make the playoffs”, I’d rather question your judgement before I question my own.

        I think the 76ers will fight and compete, but even with all their issues last season (injuries, change of headcoach, …) the Knicks still finished ahead of Philly and Philly became the 8th seed. I don’t consider Bynum a franchise caliber player and hence I don’t think Philly will be that good as everyone makes them out to be. But hey, I don’t know the future and I might be wrong. Maybe Bynum will be that good and average 25 and 12, who knows. I wouldn’t bet my money on it though…

  12. Sixersforlife says:

    Lou Williams isn’t on the Sixers. He aigned with the Hawks.

    Sixers will win the NBA championship!!!

    • Gus45 says:

      That’s why he said they would miss him?

    • Mytownla says:

      championship???? Riiiiiight lol. To all of you sixer fans, have fun with Drew jacking up random three pointers when he feels like it and elbowing guys in mid air lol

  13. truth says:

    Philly are the team to watch over the next few years.

    • zip says:

      Philly’s a team to watch this year. This team is stacked with inside and outside talent: premier big man, three point shooters, penetrating guards, and defenders. There are a lot of great teams in the East, but why not Philly? That’s why they go through the trouble of playing the games, because nothing is guaranteed.

  14. Bob says:

    Richardson is a nice player for this type of team. I like the moves they made, they are deep and have some firepower. Their defense should improve too. I used…. Not like Collins as a coach. He’s upgraded his skills and has the train moving in the right direction. Gonna miss Sweet Lou, though