Andre Iguodala has dealt with patella tendonitis for years, dating back to his college days at Arizona.
Last year, the condition sidelined him for 15 games. Sunday against San Antonio was the first time this season Iguodala couldnt go, though he went to the arena with the intent to play before a bell went off inside of his head.
I had the same feeling before like two weeks ago, and two weeks ago I played through it and it didn't quite work out for me, Iguodala said. So I tried to tell myself that if it happens again you have to let someone know because we are coming down the stretch and we dont want this overlapping with late April or early May.
Translation: Iguodala wants to be healthy for the playoffs and even the stretch leading up to the postseason when jockeying for seeding in the standings is likely to be extremely competitive.
I think everyone goes through it, Iguodala said. You are just playing so many minutes and especially the guys that get off the ground a lot.
Iguodala has played more north-south basketball this season than in recent memory, finishing at the rim, even in traffic. It is hard to say how much different the Sixers would have looked Sunday with Iguodala in the lineup, but they didnt look very good without him on the court.He is listed as a game-time decision for Wednesday's tilt against Cleveland.
Yesterday, I thought we played a very disconnected game at both ends of the floor, Sixers head coach Doug Collins said. Thats what I talked to our guys about today. When we are good we are connected in every way. We are connected physically, mentally, spiritually and we have a great vibe about ourselves. I thought yesterday we started looking around and saying who is going to do it and we cant play that way.
The statistics would second Collins opinion. San Antonio shot 46 percent from the floor. Meanwhile, the Sixers had 17 assists and 21 turnovers, which led to 27 points for the Spurs.
Collins is constantly trying to convey to his team what is necessary in the game or games ahead, and it is not always Xs and Os that need fixing.
I understand it and tried to relay it to the guys, Iguodala said of Collins talk about being connected. I had a long conversation with one or two guys on the plane last night. Its not about scoring or things that show up on the stat sheet, and when you are young you dont really understand that. Most guys dont understand that until it is too late. Year in and year out you really have to try and grasp that as soon as possible as far as using one another to make the game easy for ourselves.
The Sixers will try to stick to those principles on Tuesday when the 17-29 Cavaliers on a three-game losing streak. Collins did not mince words when he said that his team has to get Tuesdays game.
We have to win that game, Collins stressed. You are looking at one of the best young point guards in the NBA and you can bet that they are going to run at least 50 pick-and-rolls, and so if we are not connected tomorrow Kyrie Irving will pick us apart.
The Sixers are 27-22 and a half-game ahead of the Celtics in the Atlantic Division. Boston can draw even with the Sixers with a win over Charlotte on Monday.
E-mail Dei Lynam at firstname.lastname@example.org.