The700Level

Is the Phillie Phanatic a thief?

Is the Phillie Phanatic a thief?

The Philadelphia Phillies have the worst record in all of baseball.

Times are hard.

So what does a team advertise in such instances when the actual baseball is very bad? 

That their mascot likes to take things that don't belong to him, apparently.

In a new commercial featuring the Phillie Phanatic, everybody's favorite green fellow is seen grabbing other teammates' and coaches' things.

This continues the disturbing trend started by the awful Mr. Met mascot of getting into trouble. The Phanatic was probably just borrowing the stuff anyway and will definitely give it all back. He's a great guy deep down.

 

'The hope of Carson' and what Wentz meant to one boy battling cancer

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ESPN

'The hope of Carson' and what Wentz meant to one boy battling cancer

Being a sports fan can bring out the cynics in all of us. Writing about sports on the Internet often desensitizes many of us to what sports can actually mean to people. But there’s no denying the emotion this story about young Lukas Kusters made me feel.

It’s a story by ESPN about a young kid from Delaware, his passion for football, his love of the Philadelphia Eagles and Carson Wentz, his battle with cancer, and what his bond with a certain quarterback meant to both of them.

Lukas was known as “The Dutch Destroyer” because of his wildly impressive performance on the football field. He was diagnosed with cancer in April of 2016 at 8 years old and went on the fight of his life against it.

Lukas turned to his Eagles fandom and their young quarterback as a source of inspiration.

“We spent a lot of time talking about [Wentz] while we were in the hospital,” Lukas’ mother said. “And the idea of ‘the hope of Carson’ and what it meant for the Eagles was just another piece of inspiration for Lukas in his continued drive to get back on the field himself.”

Lukas received a special video message in his hospital bed from Wentz. It is impossible not to get emotional watching what it meant to Lukas.

The Make-a-Wish Foundation got involved and asked Lukas if there was anything he most wanted to do, and the youngster’s response was that he simply wanted to thank Carson.

Lukas got the opportunity to spend the day at the Eagles’ facility with Carson and he got to do just that, giving Wentz one of his Dutch Destroyer bracelets in the process.

Lukas lost his battle with cancer and was buried in his Wentz jersey. But if you’ve noticed Wentz’s wrist this season, you’ll see that Dutch Destroyer bracelet.

“It’s so much deeper than football,” Wentz said. “It’s so much more than just a game.”

Oh right, The Sixers: Toronto brings Philly to 0-3 with old-school clobbering

Oh right, The Sixers: Toronto brings Philly to 0-3 with old-school clobbering

Well, what a fun trip down memory lane that was. Just as they have seemingly spent much of the past four years doing, the Philadelphia 76ers traveled to Toronto last night on the second night of a back-to-back -- without Joel Embiid, natch -- and got minced. The Sixers got outpaced 36-19 in the first quarter and never recovered, eventually falling by a score of 128-94. 

It was another game where the things our rookies were good at, they were really good at, but the other stuff killed us. Ben Simmons ended with an impressive 18-10-8 -- even hitting a couple quasi-jumpers in the process -- but the way that the Raptors were able to shrink the floor against him and his ultra-limited range more or less strangled our half-court offense. The Sixers were -20 with him on the floor, and the cramped spacing partly led to a down night for our normally reliable shooters. (Robert Covington and J.J. Redick -- the former plagued by foul trouble -- couldn't even get their shots off, going a combined 1-3 from deep.) 

And Markelle Fultz's presence only exacerbated things, as he kept refusing to shoot from the perimeter, driving no matter how open he was. He made some nice plays and got to the line eight times, but his increasingly miserable FT form -- he shot the last one seemingly one-handed, with his other arm blocking his eyes -- shows why that's about all he's capable of at the moment. As suggested by Spike Eskin on a recent Rights to Ricky Sanchez pod, shutting him down until he can relearn how to shoot might be the move for our No. 1 overall pick at this point. He's not helping himself or the team playing like this at the moment. 

Of course, the biggest reason for the drubbing was the lack of Embiid. The team has no one to really hold down the middle without him at the moment -- Amir Johnson is our most reliable backup but he's something of a black hole on offense at the moment, and Jahlil Okafor (who got his first game action of the season) is still brutal when it comes to defensive decision-making. The team actually might look best at the moment sans Embiid with Simmons at the five, though that's not sustainable for long periods, especially when DeMar DeRozan is carving up our defense for 30 points on 8-12 (!!) shooting. 

Terrible throwback performance by the Sixers, and given that it's their third loss in a row to start the season, it may lead to a lot of understandable Same Old Sixers chatter. But don't forget how good that opening-night performance was against the Wizards, how much of the game against Boston we were leading for, and how tough a three-game stretch to start the season this was in general. I thought we'd go 0-3 and we went 0-3 -- next up is the Pistons on Monday, and in the couple weeks that follow, we play the Mavs, Hawks and Pacers. We wont' be winless for long -- though the sooner we can put one in the W column and avoid this team getting stuck in a peak-Process vortex, the better.