The Philadelphia 76ers once again proved the critics wrong on Wednesday night. They played inspired basketball and found a way to force a Game 7 against the Boston Celtics. This win followed an awful performance in Game 5 and Kevin Garnett's shot at Philadelphia sports fans.
The 76ers and the Philadelphia faithful showed up in a big way on Wednesday. The Wells Fargo Center was rocking from Allen Iverson's presentation of the game ball to the waning seconds of the ball game. It was clear that the Sixers had a big home court advantage.
This entire 76ers season has been hard to explain. They started the season 20-9 and were the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference. The second half of the season was a different animal. They played inconsistently and ended up backing into the playoffs as the eighth seed.
In the first round they played the Chicago Bulls. Nobody gave them a chance, myself included. Then, Derrick Rose tore his ACL in the fourth quarter of Game 1. Everything changed, and this team suddenly had life. The Sixers went on to win that series 4-2.
This team doesn't win pretty, that much is certain. They sometimes appear to have the worst half-court offense in the history of the NBA. Somehow, someway they win. They lack a true superstar who can create his own shots, but they still find a way. Even when they go through their stretches when they can't seem to score a single basket, they won't quit. They stick to the system, believe in themselves and believe in coach Doug Collins.
Philadelphia is a blue-collar, hard-working city. The same can be said about this gritty, sometimes unpolished 76ers team. There is nothing flashy about this team, but maybe that's why they have a chance to go to advance in the postseason.
This Sixers team is a true Philadelphia underdog story. They are a modern-day Rocky Balboa for this city. No matter how many times they get punched in the mouth, they just keep fighting. That fight could take them all the way to the Eastern Conference Finals.
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