The news came trickling in behind the Sixers' latest pathetic effort last night, a 107-96 loss in Indiana that featured all around sloppy play. The Inquirer's Kate Fagan quotes Ed Stefanski, who said the club will "seriously evaluate" whether Eddie Jordan is the right coach for this team. Sources also added the players "no longer believe in Jordan's coaching system or philosophies," and it's difficult to disagree. If there was supposed to be some semblance of an offense against the Pacers, I didn't see it.
The problem is, the Sixers would be falling into old habits if they fire their coach after one season. Ever since Larry Brown quit, they've dumped one coach after another, hoping answers, or perhaps more appropriately, miracles could come from their bench. Only one was given the opportunity to stay on for any amount of time and actually attempt to develop an identity for this club. Don't you think some consistency would help?
I honestly don't know if Eddie Jordan is a good basketball coach. It's been a brutal season, but the Sixers as they're currently constructed are no better than a .500 team anyway, no matter who is on the bench. Blaming the head coach while you try to win games with Andre Iguodala and Elton Brand as the corner stones of your franchise sounds like a bunch of nonsense.
What I do know is Jordan is already the sixth Sixers head coach since Larry Brown departed in 2003. They've had Randy Ayers, Chris Ford, Jim O'Brien, Maurice Cheeks, and Tony DiLeo, with only Cheeks staying on for more than one season. It sends the message to the players that they don't need to listen to the guy in charge, that if things don't work out right away, he'll get canned and the next one will come along. Then they start over again.
If firing Jordan is what they conclude is the right thing at the end of the season, it's hard to argue they would be wrong for doing so, but please, pick somebody and stick with them for awhile. This is a young team. There may be a few good players on this roster. They're never going to get the most out of them though unless they install a teacher who the players have confidence is going to be there beyond next season.
7. The Phillies could be searching for outfield depth in 2011 depending on how the roster shakes out over the course of the next year. Could Pat Burrell return to give them some pop off the bench? [Beerleaguer]
6. The NBA's youngest player, Jrue Holiday, ranks eighth in an SI poll for rookie NBA point guards. They might be underselling Holiday, who has been one of the lone bright spots for the Sixers lately. He's dropped 20 points three times in the last five games, and he now leads the club in three point percentage. [SI.com]
5. Much has been made of Sports Illustrated ranking Ruben Amaro 19th out of 30 MLB general managers, but it's Ed Wade's 29th place finish that was curious. Well... not really. [Finger Food]
4. Simon Gagne continues to score at a feverish pace. Last night was his fifth goal in five games. He's had much more of a presence on the ice, and is getting himself in position to shoot the puck. If this is for real, look out. [Daily News]
3. Speaking of players who are finding their groove, there was a mini-scare last night when Dan Carcillo was cut by a skate. He turned out to be fine, and it's a good thing. The energy he brings combined with his newfound maturation are a big reason the Flyers are playing so well. [Broad Street Hockey]
2. Ryan Howard is trying to make defenses respect his ability to hit the ball the other way and eliminate the shift. You don't want to take the bat out of the big guy's hands, but he could cause a lot of damage if he did this even situationally. [Delco Times]
1. The Eagles are scheduled to have Colts defensive back and former first round pick Marlin Jackson for a visit today, amid reports proposing he could play free safety. Another theory about the team's interest calls it a pre-draft bluff. [Iggles Blog]
COMMENT OF THE DAY
In Philly the most popular players are:
1. The backup QB
2. The "6th starter" (in this case Kendrick trying to outduel Moyer)
3. The backup goaltender or the dream guy we dont have
Claude Giroux's 14th goal of the season last night was "nasty." (fixed)