Embrace the Swaggy P.

Embrace the Swaggy P.

Following his big team-high 23-point scoring outburst and all-around solid performance -- four assists! -- off the bench in the Sixers come-from-behind victory over the Raptors on Tuesday night, Nick "Swaggy P." Young was wearing a sweatshirt that read "Swaggy P." on it. And he was talking about himself in the Swaggy third person.

One might question Madonna wearing a Madonna t-shirt after her own concert. Or LeBron James wearing a t-shirt with his own face on it at a concert after an NBA Finals win. So one also might be inclined to question Swaggy P. I would do no such thing.

"Y'all are here for Swaggy P.?" Young exclaimed, welcoming the throng of reporters surrounding him in the locker room post game.

"Make sure you all go buy one of these," Swaggy said referring to his sweatshirt bearing his name.

The funny thing was he doesn't even know where you can get one because a fan sent it to him. He wasn't even planning on wearing it, he said, but after the Sixers had such a wild successful fourth quarter, he obviously had a change of swag.

Swaggy P. is just going with the flow, shooting the ball when he gets it, high-fiving fans in the middle of a game, and having fun all along the way.

[Related From Last Night: Video: Watch Swaggy P. Make the Same Circus Shot We All Ridiculed Him for Taking Earlier This Month]

You can hate the term "swag" all you want -- hell, I don't really even know what it means exactly. But it works for Nick Young, a guy with plenty of charisma, an unwavering desire to shoot the rock, flashy sneakers and impressively curly/fro-y hair to go along with his big smile. His shot selection at times will most assuredly drive you Lou Williams-esque insane, but when he's on like he was Tuesday night, he's damn fun to root for.

The only assurance I need that "Swaggy P." is the right name to use for Nick Young is the fact that Doug Collins openly refers to "Swaggy" in his post game pressers. Case closed.

"Swaggy quietly has passed the ball very well," Coach Collins said. "I've been very pleased with him."

Perhaps the best part about the Swaggy P. love fest was that it wasn't a one-man show in the explosive fourth quarter. The Sixers got real solid efforts out of a handful of guys, most notably Jrue Holiday, Thad Young, and fellow newcomers Jason Richardson and Dorrell Wright.

During their huge comeback run, the Sixers got clutch shots from Young (,Nick), Wright, and Richardson, with Jrue doing the drive and setup to perfection. Speaking after the game, Holiday talked about how that's when playing is the most fun, when you're surrounded by guys who can drill big threes which can keep you in almost any game. It's quite the difference from a year ago when the only real long ball option was a #M33KS and a prayer.

This team has plenty of scoring options when they can get things going. And Jrue Holiday is learning to orchestrate with the best of them. He made great decisions on Tuesday night.

And as for the custom-made Nick Young gear that made its debut? It may be a hot item this holiday shopping season.

Even Evan Turner wants in on the action, "Swag, give me a t-shirt so I can swag-out too!"

Best of NBA: Dwyane Wade hits dagger 3-pointer in Bulls debut

Best of NBA: Dwyane Wade hits dagger 3-pointer in Bulls debut

CHICAGO -- Dwyane Wade scored 22 points in a triumphant Chicago debut, Jimmy Butler had 24 and the Bulls won their season opener, beating the Boston Celtics 105-99 on Thursday night.

Wade nailed a 3 from the corner in the final minute to make it a five-point game. Taj Gibson added 18 points and 10 rebounds, and the new-look Bulls got off to a winning start after missing the playoffs last season for the first time since 2008.

Isaiah Thomas led Boston with 25 points. Avery Bradley had 16, and Jae Crowder 14 points, but the Celtics came up short after opening with a win over Brooklyn the previous night.

The Bulls remade their roster in the offseason, jettisoning one hometown superstar and welcoming another when they traded Derrick Rose to New York and signed Wade to a two-year deal worth about $47 million in a move that stunned Miami.

The three-time NBA champion and 12-time All-Star is off to a good start with the Bulls after 13 seasons with the Heat.

Wade hit 4 of 6 3-pointers in this game after making just seven all of last season (see full recap).

New-look Hawks roll past Wizards
ATLANTA -- Dwight Howard dominated the boards in his Atlanta debut, Paul Millsap scored 28 points and Tim Hardaway Jr. ignited the new-look Hawks to a 114-99 victory over the Washington Wizards in their season opener Thursday night.

Howard grabbed 19 rebounds to go along with 11 points, just what the Hawks expected from their new center, and it certainly wasn't unusual for three-time All-Star Millsap to lead the way in scoring.

But Hardaway's performance was totally unexpected given the way he struggled in his first season with the Hawks, when he was largely confined to the bench and even forced to spend time in the D-League.

He scored 21 points, matching his high in an Atlanta uniform, and broke open a close game with back-to-back 3-pointers in the fourth. The Hawks, who led only 81-80 heading to the final period, outscored the Wizards 33-19 over the final 12 minutes (see full recap).

Best of NHL: Canadiens rally past Lightning for 6th straight win

Best of NHL: Canadiens rally past Lightning for 6th straight win

MONTREAL -- Max Pacioretty scored the tiebreaking goal in Montreal's three-goal third period as the Canadiens beat the Tampa Bay Lightning 3-1 Thursday night for their sixth straight win.

Alex Galchenyuk and Torrey Mitchell also scored to help Montreal improve to 7-0-1. Carey Price made 29 saves to win for the fourth time in four starts this season.

Alex Killorn scored the lone goal for the Lightning, who lost against an Eastern-Conference opponent for the first time this season. Ben Bishop stopped 23 shots.

With the scored tied 1-1, Pacioretty got the go-ahead goal at 10:23 by beating Bishop glove-side. Blown coverage by the Lightning left the Canadiens' captain all alone on the edge of the face-off circle, and Bishop couldn't see the shot with Andrew Shaw posted firmly in front of goal.

Montreal remains the only NHL team still undefeated in regulation (see full recap).

Crosby's late goal gives Penguins win over Islanders
PITTSBURGH -- Sidney Crosby scored the tiebreaking goal late in the third period to lead the Pittsburgh Penguins to a 4-2 victory over the New York Islanders on Thursday night.

Patric Hornqvist, Evgeni Malkin and Phil Kessel also scored -- each getting his third of the season -- to help the Penguins win for the third time in four games and improve to 5-0-1 at home.

Crosby, playing for the second straight game after missing the first six with a concussion, scored with 2:25 left as he caught a pass from Scott Wilson at the top of the crease and quickly turned to his forehand to put the puck behind Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak.

Kessel added a power-play goal to cap the scoring 32 seconds later.

Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 35 shots while starting for the eighth straight game.

Travis Hamonic and Shane Prince scored for the Islanders, and Halak finished with 31 saves (see full recap).

Streaking Red Wings win marathon shootout vs. Blues
ST. LOUIS -- Henrik Zetterberg scored in the eighth round of a shootout to give the Detroit Red Wings a 2-1 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Thursday night.

Zetterberg's goal gave the Red Wings a six-game winning streak.

In the shootout, St. Louis' first shooter, Alexander Steen, scored but then Vladimir Tarasenko, Kevin Shattenkirk, David Perron, Nail Yakupoc, Robby Fabbri, Patrick Burgland and Dmitrjij Jaskin all came up short.

Gustav Nyquist scored on Detroit's second attempt but Frans Nielsen, Dylan Larkin, Andreas Athanasiou, Tomas Tatar, Riley Sheehan and Darren Helm all missed.

St. Louis had the better chances in overtime. Center Jaden Schwartz missed a wide-open net early in the extra session. Jori Lehtera was stopped on a breakaway midway through the period by Detroit goalie Petr Mrazek (see full recap).