AI: 'a change may be the best thing for everyone'

AI: 'a change may be the best thing for everyone'

It looks like A.I. may have played his final game wearing a Sixers uniform.  Iverson was told he did not need to come to the Wachovia Center tonight for their game against the Wizards.  Iverson released the following statement through his agent.

his morning, I went to
the practice facility and was ready to participate in shootaround. I
had back spasms in the Chicago game, but felt fine today, and told our
trainer that I could play. When I got onto the court, I was told that I
did not need to participate, so I stood on the sideline until practice
was over. When shootaround ended, I went into the team huddle.
Afterwards, the head coach told me that I did not need to come to the
arena tonight, or travel to Orlando.

In my entire career, even
the doctors haven’t been able to tell me not to play. I’ve played
through injury and illness. I think everyone knows how much I love
being out on the court, competing and winning. That’s why it was so
disheartening to be told that I couldn’t play, knowing that I was
ready. It hurt even more to be told not to come at all.

This season has been very
frustrating for everyone. We’ve lost 12 of 14 games and nothing seems
to be working. I have expressed my frustration to my teammates,
however, I have continued to give 100 percent night in and night out.
Apparently, it hasn’t been enough to help our team win. As hard as it
is to admit, a change may be the best thing for everyone. I hate
admitting that because I love the guys on the team and the city of
Philadelphia.
I truly wanted to retire a 76er.

I appreciate that in my 11 years in Philadelphia, the fans have always stood by me, supported me, and gone to bat for me.

Sixers owner Ed Snider had this to say about Iverson's wish to be traded:

I think it's time to move on.  We'll try to accommodate him.

Iverson won't travel with the team to Orlando tomorrow.

More news on A.I.
>>Snider says it's time for Iverson to go [Inquirer]
>>Iverson's days appear numbered in Philly [NYTimes]
>>76ers send Iverson home against Washington [Sports Illustrated]

Eagles-Redskins predictions by our (cough) experts

Eagles-Redskins predictions by our (cough) experts

The Eagles (5-7) come into Sunday's game against the Redskins (6-5-1) on a three-game losing streak.

The Redskins exposed the Eagles' defense the last time these two teams met almost two months ago on Oct. 16.

Here are our (cough) expert predictions for this Week 14 matchup.

Dave Zangaro (4-8)
After losing three straight games, I couldn't pick the Eagles against just about any team in the NFL. Maybe Cleveland. Maybe Chicago. 

But against Washington? Nah. Can't do it. 

Sure, I know Washington comes into the Linc on a two-game losing streak, and they're clearly not a top team in the NFC. It just doesn't matter. Kirk Cousins is a decent quarterback and Washington clearly has enough weapons to shred the Eagles like they did for 493 yards in the first meeting. 

For the Eagles' offense, Carson Wentz hasn't looked good in a long time and this week he enters with a few of his skill position players banged up. 

This looks like another loss to me. 

Washington 26, Eagles 20

Derrick Gunn (5-7)
The Eagles are an embarrassed, desperate team, and a win over the Redskins could lift the weight of what has been a downward spiral. Ryan Mathews and Jordan Matthews returned to practice this week, but can they jolt this offense back to life? Carson Wentz has played like a rookie the last three games, and the once stout defense has crumbled.

So here come the Redskins, losers of two in a row but still very much in the playoff conversation. The Redskins' defense is beat up and could be missing several key players, but unfortunately for the Eagles, Washington's offensive weapons are relatively healthy, except for tight end Jordan Reed, who's listed as questionable with an AC joint sprain. Matt Jones and Robert Kelley pack a punch out of the backfield. 

Quarterback Kirk Cousins has been in a zone. Over their last six games, Cousins has averaged 352.6 passing yards, plus he's thrown 12 touchdown passes and only two interceptions. 

The Eagles remember what Washington did to them back in Week 6, but I feel their revenge motives will fall short.

Redskins 27, Eagles 17

Ray Didinger (5-7) 
With all the talk this week about effort and players dogging it, I fully expect the Eagles to come out focused and fired up at home Sunday. Here's the problem: I just don't know if they are good enough to win the game. Motivation is one thing, but talent is another and right now, the Eagles are lacking in that area.
 
The players have been called out by their coach, by the media and by the fans so if they have any pride at all they will come out and play hard against the Redskins but I look at the matchup of this Eagles' secondary against the Washington receivers — especially a hot DeSean Jackson (25.3 yards per catch the last three games) — and I don't see a happy result.
 
Redskins 24, Eagles 17

Corey Seidman (5-7)
Close game, better performance from Carson Wentz and an awakening in the run game, but not enough defensive talent to shut down what Washington will try to do deep with DeSean Jackson and Jamison Crowder, over the middle with Jordan Reed and short with Pierre Garcon.

Redskins 31, Eagles 27

Andy Schwartz (5-7)
It's simply come to this. I can't pick the Eagles to win a game the rest of the season until they do.

I want to think the offense will benefit from the return of Ryan Mathews and Jordan Matthews. And I want to think the defense will play with desperation and break out of its "slump" and make some big plays.

But I won't believe it until I see it.

Redskins 24, Eagles 16

Shayne Gostisbehere suffers bone bruise on right hand in win over Stars

Shayne Gostisbehere suffers bone bruise on right hand in win over Stars

Flyers defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere took a shot off his right hand in the second period Saturday and has a bone bruise. 
 
The Flyers will watch it because sometimes the swelling prevents wearing a glove comfortably the next day.
 
Ghost, who has five points – all assists – over his past six games, was hit with a puck in the second period of a 4-2 win over the Stars. He went to the bench and tried to shake it off, but left for the dressing room shortly after a Flyers power play began in the period’s final three minutes.
 
He participated for part of the power play, then left the ice and did not return until the start of the third period.
 
“It was good by then,” he said. “Obviously, it hurt a bit.”
 
The Flyers play in Detroit on Sunday night. 
 
Ghost has 16 points (four goals) in 29 games this season. X-rays were negative, he said, adding he was not worried about the hand, which was badly swollen after the game.