Why the Sixers Must Name Allen Iverson Head Coach

Why the Sixers Must Name Allen Iverson Head Coach

The Philadelphia 76ers have spent the past month conducting one of the most boring, uneventful, irrelevant coaching searches in the history of sports.

Ever since the team announced the resignation of Doug Collins and the hiring of math nerd Sam Hinkie as general manager, we've seen nothing but candidates who are either retreads or assistants you've never heard of -- and no indication that the team is in any hurry to actually hire someone.

And the guys they’ve considered don’t exactly excite me. Brian Shaw, an obscure 1980s Laker best known for dating Madonna? Kelvin Sampson, the guy who got fired from Indiana for NCAA violations? Jeff Hornacek, 'cause it turned out so well the last time he came to town? Chris Finch, you mean this guy?

Are any of these guys going to get our fanbase excited, make the Sixers relevant, or make tickets cost more than 72 cents on Stubhub? Of course not.

I was intrigued by the recent move by the Brooklyn Nets to hire as their new coach Jason Kidd, a former star point guard who led the team to the finals as a player, only recently stopped playing, and had no prior coaching experience. I got to thinking- if only the Sixers had someone like that they could turn to…

Yes, the Sixers must hire Allen Iverson as their next head coach. And the more you think about it, the more of a no-brainer it is.

Everything good that has happened to the Sixers in the last two decades has been because of Allen Iverson. He led them to their only finals appearance and won their only MVP award. And more importantly, he's respected by players and revered by fans. And yes, the man needs a job.

Now, I know what the naysayers are going to say.

How can we hire a coach who doesn't like practice? To that I say, please. Where has practicing every day gotten the team in the last 15 years?

Sure, Iverson's name in the last few years has often been associated with financial woes, alcoholism and gambling addiction. But to say that being broke, or that having a weakness for drinking and betting means you don't deserve a job is a slap in the face to any fan in this great city who has ever dealt with any of the above. And didn't Jason Kidd get popped for a DUI just a couple of months ago?

The question isn't whether the Sixers can risk hiring Allen Iverson. It's whether they can risk not hiring him. And to think- the Coach Iverson Era might even make Eskin's show listenable again.

Other Philly sports takes:

- I heard Lenny Dykstra got out of jail yesterday. Can he be in the Phillies' lineup today?

- I can't believe this latest baseball steroid investigation. MLB should vacate the last five World Series and award them to the Phillies.

- It's an outrage to me that Jason Peters was arrested for drag racing last week. The Eagles need to make it clear that such criminals aren't tolerated on their team, and Michael Vick needs to take the lead in doing so.

- The Cary Williams Sconse interview was the most embarrassing of the year for a Philadelphia athlete, and that includes the time Ilya Bryzgalov praised Stalin.

- Just think, if only McNabb hadn't blown it in the Super Bowl, that would've been Jeffrey Lurie's Super Bowl ring that Vladimir Putin stole

- Let's all shed a tear for Rick Reilly, who didn't find Merion to his liking. Let's hope next time Philadelphia hosts a major sporting event, they give more of an effort attending to the needs of big-time national sportswriters.

You can follow @FakeWIPCaller on Twitter here.

Flyers-Panthers 5 things: Eyeing longest win streak since Ilya Bryzgalov was in net

Flyers-Panthers 5 things: Eyeing longest win streak since Ilya Bryzgalov was in net

Flyers (14-10-3) vs. Panthers (12-11-3)
7 p.m. on CSN and CSNPhilly.com, Pregame Live at 6:30

The Flyers, on the NHL’s longest current win streak, will try to extend it to six games when they host the Florida Panthers on Tuesday night at the Wells Fargo Center.

Let’s get you set for the matchup with five things to know:

1. Push it to the limit
The Flyers beat the Predators, 4-2, on Sunday to give them their most consecutive wins since March 15-22, 2014, when they also won five in a row.

A victory on Tuesday would mark the team’s longest win streak since Dec. 2-15, 2011, when it won seven straight and Ilya Bryzgalov was in net — yeah, that long ago.

Flyers head coach Dave Hakstol has been pleased with the consistent effort by his club after it collapsed Nov. 11 in a 6-3 loss to the Maple Leafs.

“You go back to that poor performance up in Toronto, which was about a dozen games ago,” Hakstol said Monday. “Since that point in time, I think we’ve really taken pride in the consistency of our play and worrying about what we do on a day-to-day basis. It’s real important that we continue to do that.”

2. Leier hops right in
With Matt Read out approximately a month because of an oblique muscle pull, winger Taylor Leier has been recalled from AHL affiliate and will join Pierre-Edouard Bellemare and Dale Weise on the Flyers’ third line Tuesday.

Leier, a 2012 fourth-round pick of the Flyers, gets his chance after proving himself with the Phantoms in 22 games, putting up 20 points on six goals and 14 assists.

The Flyers decided it was Leier over Scott Laughton, who has been sent back down to Lehigh Valley. Leier's earned his second call-up of the season with the Flyers. The first was just for one game on Oct. 25 in which he was a healthy scratch. Last season, the 22-year-old made his NHL debut, going scoreless in six games.

3. Mason on a roll
Speaking of consistency, goalie Steve Mason finally finding a rhythm is a big reason why the Flyers are stringing together wins.

In his last four games, the 28-year-old is 4-0-0 with a 1.71 goals-against average and .945 save percentage. He was honored for his play by being named the NHL’s first Star of the Week.

“Right now, there’s a comfort level with the guys in front of me,” Mason said Monday. “Winning five in a row is nice and we’d like to keep making ground in the standings.”

4. Keep an eye on ...
Flyers: Ever since Michael Del Zotto returned to the lineup from his three-game benching, the orange and black have won five straight. Now there’s no direct correlation, but Del Zotto is providing a stable presence defensively and chipping in offensively with four points (two goals, two assists) over the five-game run.

Panthers: Center Aleksander Barkov leads Florida in assists with 12 and has eight points (two goals, six assists) over his last nine games for a plus-5 rating.

5. This and that
• Mason is 8-3-2 with a 1.95 goals-against average and .939 save percentage in 13 career games against the Panthers.

• Florida goalie Roberto Luongo, who has a 2.15 goals-against average this season, is 9-10-3 with a 2.83 goals-against average and .918 save percentage in 23 games lifetime against the Flyers.

• The Panthers are 1-1-2 since general manager Tom Rowe took over head-coaching duties for the fired Gerard Gallant.

• The status of Radko Gudas (sick) for tonight’s game is uncertain. He’s missed the last two contests.

• Florida defenseman Keith Yandle’s ironman streak of 577 games will come to an end Tuesday as the 30-year-old is expected to miss some time with a lower-body injury.

• It’s unknown if Panthers leading goal scorer Jonathan Marchessault (lower-body injury) will play Tuesday. 

Philly brewery creates Ghost Bear beer in orange and black can

Philly brewery creates Ghost Bear beer in orange and black can

Who doesn't love a good dance around sports league licensing deals?

The bootleg T-shirt business is a cottage industry keeping sports fans in Philadelphia sharply dressed for years.

There's something to be appreciated about the creative marketing that hints at something but doesn't expressly break any rules.

Conshohocken Brewing absolutely killed it with the naming and branding on their latest beer: the Ghost Bear Golden Ale that just so happens to be in an orange and black can.

Now, some hockey fans who watch plenty of Flyers games might say it's in honor of defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere, but whose to say it's not simply a beer named after a couple of wonderful emojis. Namely the ghost and the bear,

I, for one, applaud them on their branding. You can pick one up at their local brew pubs or at the release party over in Fishtown on Friday.

And what a world we live in where Joel Embiid wants to create his own line of Shirley Temple beverages and there's a beer seemingly named after a Flyer who gets the healthy scratch.