The schedule is out for the Philadelphia 76ers 2009-10 regular season. The Philadelphia 76ers are not going to be contending for a championship this season, but that doesn't mean there aren't going to be some great games and great storylines to be seen.
I am not going to order them ten to one because the number one game to watch this season can not be said just yet; that game will be when Allen Iverson comes to town, quite obviously. Instead, I will start with opening night, and work my way through the season.
Wed, Oct. 28 @Orlando 7:00 P.M.
This is the 76ers season opener.
In the playoffs last season, the 76ers led the Magic two games to one in the series, and were set to play Game Four at the Wachovia Center. The game was tied with seconds remaining, when Hedo Turkoglu did this.
In Game Five, Dwight Howard got away with this less three minutes into the game:
Clearly he should have been suspended right after that, and his 24 point, 24 rebound, four block performance would never have been. Unfortunately, the Sixers lost the series 4-2 despite Howard's absence in Game Six.
Now, Rashard Lewis is facing a drug suspension for the beginning of this year, too.
The 76ers would have a different roster today if they had somehow won that first round series. We can sit back and say that the Magic were simply the better team, or we can understand that we had that series in our clutches and let the series, and Andre Miller, slip away.
You can bet your baskets and balls the Magic aren't willing to go back to Game Five in Orlando and replay it minus Howard. They were lucky to get out of that series.
Wed, Nov 18 VS Charlotte 7:00 P.M.
Larry Brown, the former Coach of the Year for the 76ers in 2000-01, returns to Philadelphia. Enough said.
Fri, Nov 27 VS Atlanta 7:00 P.M.
Last summer, the Sixers had their choice of free agent power forwards: Elton Brand or Josh Smith. The 76ers slogan at the time was Run With Us. Besides Andre Miller, the 76ers were a very young team.
Last season, Brand spent most of the year on the injured list; when he did play, it was evident that the Sixers weren't gelling overnight. The Sixers paid close to $20 million more to get Brand, then the Hawks paid to keep Smith.
It's not time to give up on Elton Brand, but you can't help thinking what might have been.
Mon, Dec 7 VS Denver 7:00 P.M.
The 76ers will play host to a talented Denver team that will be bringing Ty Lawson off the bench. When the 76ers were on the clock at the 2009 NBA Draft, they were clearly deciding between Lawson and Holiday.
Wed, Dec 16 VS Cleveland 7:00 P.M.
For Sixers fans coming to the game, put on your brown-nosing boots. Lebron is not signing an extension this summer. Who knows? Maybe Lebron wants to be the one to bring the championship trophy back to Philly?
With a supporting cast of Iguodala, Brand, Thaddeus Young, and other young promising talent, Philly could be an intriguing place to call home come next summer.
Thurs, Dec 31 @LA Clippers 9:30
Elton Brand makes his return to ClipperLand. I wonder if there will be enough fans in Staples Center that Elton Brand will hear the boo's.
Fri, Jan 8 VS Toronto 7:00 P.M.
Sixers fans welcome back the garbage man, Reggie Evans, as well as a very improved Raptors team. With Calderon, Turkoglu, Bosh, and Bargnani, they will certainly be a contender for homecourt in the first round of the playoffs.
Wed, Jan 20 VS Portland 7:00 P.M.
Andre Miller, the 76ers floor leader and best player for the last two and a half seasons, makes his return to Philadelphia. How will the fans greet him?
Portland appears to be a lock for the playoffs. A rotation of Miller, Roy, Outlaw, Aldridge, Oden, Webster, Rodriguez, Blake, and Pryzbilla could have them hosting a first round playoff series when April rolls around.
Fri, Jan 29 VS LA Lakers 7:00 P.M.
The Sixers play host to the defending champion Lakers. This means Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Lamar Odom, Ron Artest, Andrew Bynum, Derek Fisher, and company.
Fri, Mar 5 VS Boston 7:00 P.M.
The 76ers play host to the Eastern Conference favorites (if healthy). The Celtics will boast one of the best starting lineups in basketball with Rondo, Allen, Pierce, Garnett, and Rasheed Wallace.
The Sixers future is unclear at this point. No one really knows what Stefanski is going to do next. This season's focal points are the following: growth of chemistry as a team, progression of young players, and figuring out where to go from here.