Philadelphia 76ers Just Not Ready For the "Next Step"

Luke SullivanContributor IDecember 6, 2008

It is a sad thing to witness, but every time I settle down to watch the 76ers play, I don't know whether they are going to come out firing or fizzle. Their most recent loss to the Nets demonstrates that they are nothing more than a middle of the pack squad not yet ready to make the jump to "contender."

Of course you can analyze this from a need-based standpoint, i.e. all that they need is a good sniper and the offense will start clicking. This is the wrong approach however. The main problem is the one man who they chose to lead this team Andre Iguodala, the new AI.

Iguodala put up a good stat line tonight with 20 pts and 11 rbs, but if you look beyond that, he went 5-15 from the field and most would say "he just didn't have the jumper working." That is just the problem, he never has his jumper working, he never gets that key assist or that crucial rebound late in the game. He is a young man who is not a leader, and the Sixers should have realized that before giving him a deal for about $80 million/6 years. Sixers GM Ed Stefanski made his first mistake as a GM with that move.

It is a shame that such a talented, young team has been placed in the hands of an incapable leader. Don't get me wrong, he is an alright player off the bench or in a marginal role, but is not the kind of leader that this young team needs.

I want to see Andre make that big shot, get that big rebound, or make that nice kickout pass, but until then, he needs to be spending less time on the court and more on the bench until he proves that he has what it takes to take that "Next Step."