What the Philadelphia 76ers Should Ask For on Christmas
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"Oh the weather outside is frightful, but the court is so delightful. And since the fans have come on in, let us win! Let us win! Let us win!"
Above is the remixed version that 76ers" target="_blank">Philadelphia 76ers fans are singing of the popular Christmas carol "Let It Snow."
Okay, maybe they aren't actually singing it, but it is a fun take on things.
When it comes to wins, their 13-15 record is hardly what people were hoping for 28 games into the season. A summer of hope has turned into a winter of question.
Questions about players getting traded, players producing and players getting healthy. The first stretch of this season seemed like the Sixers might be able to stay afloat until Andrew Bynum was healthy enough to play, but that's proven to not be the case.
As bad as this season has seemed, there is still 54 games left to be played. There is plenty of time for this team to turn around what is now a mediocre season.
All they might need are a few good Christmas wishes.
More Success Out of Their Young Players
There's been no bigger surprise than what Jrue Holiday has been able to do so far. He's almost always the best player on the floor in nearly every game that he's played in. His 18.3 points and 8.8 assists per game are both career highs, but it's more than his stats. Leadership is where he's taken his largest steps on and off of the floor.
Holiday obviously is a great basketball player, but watch any Sixers game and you'll see how verbal he is, on top of playing like a beast. The fourth-year point guard is starting to look like a franchise player.
Turner is finally looking like the player that the Sixers were expecting when they drafted him No. 2 overall in the 2010 NBA draft. Fans don't have to cringe every time he takes a mid-range jump shot, and they couldn't be happier with how he has stepped in as a backup point guard.
Young is now a starter and making the most of his opportunities. A reader commenting on one of my earlier articles said that Young is impressive because of how much he does without plays being run through him. They really couldn't be more right about that, and it's been a lot of fun to see Young work harder than nearly everyone else and succeed because of that.
Continued success means that everyone needs to continue to work hard. Philadelphia isn't winning games like they want to, but it's not because players aren't working hard.
That has to be promising.
Some Better Luck Against the Atlantic Division
There is no better way of attaining a high playoff seed than winning your division. Each conference has three divisions within it. The winner of each is guaranteed one of the top three seeds come playoff time, so being at the top of the division come season's end certainly has its advantages.
Philadelphia is currently sitting at fourth in the Atlantic Division. The best way to get to the top is to beat the other teams within the division, but Philly is struggling to get the job done. They have a 4-4 record against division opponents which isn't bad, but when the Brooklyn Nets are 6-2 and the New York Knicks are 4-1, then the Sixers' inter-divisional mark doesn't look so good.
Christmas should be looked at as the close to the first part of the season. It's over so let's focus on how well the Sixers can do after the great holiday.
It will be crucial to making the playoffs.
A Good Break from Bowling
Every member of the Sixers is a professional basketball player. Yes, a professional basketball player. That means maybe they can all take a break from another sport played on a hardwood floor.
Of course, I'm referencing Andrew Bynum, who injured his knee while bowling, so it's more fitting to say that Philly should ask for a healthy Bynum.
To hear that bowling set back Bynum for another couple of months was painful in a unique way. It almost felt like the Sixers were destined to be without the seven-footer until they were able to figure out other problems that they were facing.
Maybe his absence will end up helping Philadelphia more than anyone believed that it could. The team has the opportunity to grow and work out any kinks so that everything is ironed out when Bynum does return.
But such an optimistic idea doesn't really help much.
The fact is that his absence has prevented the Sixers from reaching anything close to their potential. Trading for the big man meant that the franchise was investing in his future as much as theirs.
Him not playing cancels all of that out.
So as Philadelphia goes into the rest of the season, it's safe to say that asking for a break from any players going bowling would end up being a good wish.
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