Sixers Season Starts Tonight

Sixers Season Starts Tonight

The Sixers season starts tonight in South Philly against Michael Redd, Andrew Bogut, and the Milwaukee Bucks.  The Birdman and I went down to the Wachovia Center on Saturday for an open practice for all season ticket holders.  (I am not one)  One side of the lower bowl was open and maybe half full.  It was rather cool to see an NBA team practice.  Mo Cheeks was miked up and you could hear him yelling at the players.  Mo was noting repeatedly that they usually don't look this bad.  He even yelled at A.I. for cussing.  It was all pretty humorous and entertaining.  NBA players have to shoot for a chance to avoid doing suicides as well; this brought me back to high school basketball days.

Some observations I made: There are a lot of new faces.  Steven Hunter will be starting tonight due to Samuel Dalembert's injury.  Lee Nailon should be one of the new bench guys to see a lot of action.  Louis Williams is quick.  He and Iverson were talking some smack.

One of the coolest aspects of the day was some of the player interaction with the fans.  On his way off the court, Iverson signed some autographs and actually took the jersey off of his back and gave it to a young fan.  Chris Webber also gave the jersey off his back to a fan.  Nice moves.

This paragraph from yesterday's article by Phil Jasner gives a nice synopsis of the state of the Sixers coming into opening night:

Opening night tomorrow against the Milwaukee
Bucks is not projecting the way Cheeks and president/general manager
Billy King had anticipated. Starting center Samuel Dalembert, who
aggravated his right quadriceps strain in Thursday's preseason finale
in San Antonio, is out for at least 10 to 14 days. Starting small
forward Kyle Korver hyperextended his left knee in Saturday's open
practice at the Wachovia Center and was held out of yesterday's
session, but Cheeks said, "I think he'll be ready to play."

My thoughts on the coming season: It should be an exciting year.  No one expects anything out of them, so if they play well and make a decent playoff run then fans should be happy.  Andre Iguodala and Allen Iverson are two of the most exciting players in the game and watching them every night should be a treat.  Will CWebb be able to perform at any level near his all star days?  Will his knees hold up?  In any event, the Sixers have some young talent and the A.I. duo should be fun to watch.

Elsewhere:

-Dalembert out two weeks with reinjured quad [ESPN]
-Cheeks wants to see some pressure defense [Inky]:

"I think we have more willing guys to get up
and play this type of defense than we did in Portland," he said. "It's
what I wanted to play [there], but I think these guys are a lot more
willing. You also have, as I had in Portland, a couple of shot-blockers
back there."

-Team Report: Getting Inside [Foxsports]
-Wack ranks third among hoops arenas in USA Today [Sixers Journal]:

The top 5; Denver (4.16), Indiana (4.14), Philadelphia (4.14), Phoenix (4.11), Detroit (4.05).

-A.I. should pull back [ESPN Insider]:

This year's Sixers have too much talent elsewhere to stand around and
watch A.I. dribble, drive, elevate and either shoot or kick out a pass
because he couldn't get a shot off. It's not contender talent mind you,
just playoff talent, perhaps enough to challenge the Nets for the
Atlantic Division crown.

.

Best of MLB: Mike Trout (thumb) leaves early as Marlins crush Angels

Best of MLB: Mike Trout (thumb) leaves early as Marlins crush Angels

MIAMI -- Mike Trout sprained his left thumb stealing second base Sunday, and the Los Angeles Angels took a thumping without him, losing 9-2 to the Miami Marlins.

Trout yelled in pain as he rose after sliding headfirst in the fifth inning. He was examined by a trainer, stayed in the game, but was replaced in the sixth. X-rays were negative, and there was no immediate timetable regarding his return.

The reigning American League MVP was 0 for 2 when he departed with the Angels trailing 4-2. He finished 2 for 9 in the series to drop his average to .337 (see full recap).

Aaron Judge hit first-career grand slam in Yankees' win
NEW YORK -- Aaron Judge hit his first career grand slam and the New York Yankees took full advantage of Oakland's shoddy defense Sunday in a 9-5 victory over the Athletics.

Michael Pineda (6-2) tossed six innings of three-hit ball to win his third straight start. Aaron Hicks and Chris Carter each had an early sacrifice fly as the AL East leaders scored five unearned runs and took two of three in a well-pitched series.

Judge connected with two outs in the third for his 16th home run, tying Mike Trout of the Angels for the big league lead. The drive landed in the right-field seats, not far in front of The Judge's Chambers cheering section installed by the Yankees for the start of this 4-2 homestand.

Khris Davis hit his 15th home run for the A's, who committed two more costly errors to raise their season total to 49. They began the day with 10 more than any other team in the majors.

The fielding failures put starter Andrew Triggs (5-4) in tough situations. He went six innings and gave up one earned run (see full recap).

Miguel Gonzalez loses perfect game in seventh, but pitches White Sox to win
CHICAGO -- Miguel Gonzalez took a perfect game into the seventh inning, Todd Frazier hit a two-run homer and the Chicago White Sox beat the Detroit Tigers 7-3 on Sunday.

Melky Cabrera and Matt Davidson also connected, helping the White Sox take three of four in the series. David Robertson got two outs for his seventh save.

Gonzalez (4-5) allowed three runs and six hits in 7 2/3 innings while snapping a five-start losing streak. The right-hander struck out six and walked none.

Gonzalez retired his first 18 batters before Andrew Romine led off the seventh with a hard one-hop liner to shortstop Tim Anderson, who couldn't field the ball cleanly and was originally charged with an error. Alex Avila followed with a single into to right field, and Romine's ball was later changed to a hit (see full recap).

Gone but not forgotten: Joel Embiid remembers Harambe on 1-year anniversary of death

Gone but not forgotten: Joel Embiid remembers Harambe on 1-year anniversary of death

Gone, but not forgotten … as long as Sixers superstar center Joel Embiid has his way.

On the one-year anniversary of Harambe's death, Embiid remembered the slain gorilla on Instagram with the caption: "Gone but never forgotten #RIPHarambe."

The Instagram post was accompanied by a picture of Harambe along with a longer message and acquired over 22,700 likes within the first 37 minutes of its posting.

Gone but never forgotten #RIPHarambe

A post shared by Joel "The Process" Embiid (@joelembiid) on

There are some factual errors in Embiid's post, however. The picture stated that Harambe "would've been 18 today," which was posted Sunday.

Harambe's birthday was May 27, 1999. He would have been 18 years and one day old Sunday.

This was not Embiid's first participation in the Harambe Internet meme.

Regardless, the tragic killing of Harambe, a popular male gorilla at the Cincinnati Zoo, sparked outrage and then Harambe became an Internet meme.