76ers

Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons take responsibility for Sixers' 'soft' effort in loss to Nets

Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons take responsibility for Sixers' 'soft' effort in loss to Nets

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A 25-point loss to the Brooklyn Nets obviously doesn't reflect well on Brett Brown. 

It's inevitable he'll face a ton of criticism after the Sixers' worst performance of the season, a 122-97 defeat Sunday night in Brooklyn (see observations).

But the lifeless, careless effort the Sixers turned in doesn't reflect very well on his players either. 

To their credit, Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid were blunt in admitting that.

“We’ve been playing soft," Simmons told reporters. "We’ve been bulls----ing."

Embiid concurred.

"I’m sure everybody can agree that we were soft," he said. "We were bad.”

Neither Simmons, Embiid or Markelle Fultz used the fact that this was the second game of a back-to-back and the Sixers' fifth game in seven days as an excuse.

There's really no legitimate excuse for a season-high 27 turnovers, for attempting 40 shots less than the opposition, for letting a sub-.500 team grasp control of the game in the second half without any discernable fight back.

“The coaches don’t control us making shots and they don’t control us turning the ball over," Embiid said. "That’s none of their fault. At times we can all do a better job as far as controlling the game. I don’t think it’s none of their fault; it’s on the players. We’re the ones that go out there and we have a game plan, and we should just follow it and trust it."

A big part of the game plan was, of course, to feed Embiid on the post. Yet the big man, who entered the night averaging 29.6 points, second most in the NBA, scored 16 points on just eight field-goal attempts. He's been an incredibly efficient player this season, but not to the extent that he can rescue his team from a nightmare night while only shooting eight times.

On Tuesday in Toronto, the Sixers also struggled with turnovers, giving it away 23 times, and they also fell behind a large margin — as many as 26 points. On that night, they worked their way back into the contest, cutting the Raptors' lead to single digits. That sort of effort was lacking Sunday.

“Tonight, for whatever reason, it just didn’t feel like we were going to have that firepower, that fight that we need to have," Brown said. "We’ll see how we respond after we all get back after a day off tomorrow.”

According to Embiid, Brown "was ashamed" by the Sixers' performance.

Wednesday night in Indiana, the 6-5 Sixers will try again for their first road win. At a minimum, they'll look to play with the kind of energy and intensity Brown asks for, and which he depends on his players to provide.

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Uh Oh: Stephen A. Smith is predicting HUGE things for Sixers this season

Uh Oh: Stephen A. Smith is predicting HUGE things for Sixers this season

Stephen A. Smith's track record of predicting things is suspect to say the least.

So it's with great trepidation that Philadelphia 76ers fans should watch the below clip in which he predicts an NBA Finals appearance for Brett Brown's club this coming season.

Smith made the prediction on ESPN's First Take on Friday morning while sitting alongside NBA legend Magic Johnson (the joke about tampering with Giannis may have been the highlight of the segment).

"The Philadelphia 76ers are going to the NBA Finals," Smith declares. "I'm going to defer to my man Jalen Rose when he points out that Boston arguably has the best perimeter shooting team. We can't ignore that. Toronto lost Kawhi, ain't nothing to discuss. The Greek Freak, as phenomenal as he is, the combo of not having a reliable perimeter shot combined with Malcolm Brogdon being in Indiana..."

"My attitude is, I don't like the fact that Philly lost JJ Redick, that's a big loss to me," Smith continues. "The fact that Boston no longer has Al Horford and the Sixers do, not only somebody to pair with Embiid but to spell him whenever he's out. I'm going to believe Ben Simmons has been working on his shot. I'm going to believe Tobias Harris doesn't have to worry about co-existing with Jimmy Butler and that's a plus. I'm going to believe Josh Richardson can play at both ends of the floor..."

"I'm a little suspect on their bench, but I think the Sixers are going to be playing in June."

On the bright side for Philly fans, it's not like Smith is making some bold proclamation here. FiveThirtyEight's prediction model actually gives the Sixers the best chances of making the Finals of any team in the NBA given the East's weaker make up than the West. In fact, they give the Sixers almost twice as good a chance of doing so than the next closest Eastern contender the Bucks (54% vs. 27%).

So Stephen A. isn't going out on a limb, but it never feels great when he picks your squad in anything.

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Sixers tease new red Statement jerseys that differ from last season's

76ers_red_statement_jersey.jpg
@ChrisHeck76

Sixers tease new red Statement jerseys that differ from last season's

The Sixers' Statement Edition jerseys last year were the red uniforms that said "Sixers" across the front in an interesting script. It appears those jerseys will be different for the 2019-2020 season.

Chris Heck, President of the Sixers and Mr. #OnBrand, tweeted out an image of the new jerseys that look quite similar to last season's but instead of "Sixers" across the front they have the familiar "Phila" in script.

Give it a look below:

The jerseys also have the familiar stars down the side of the jersey. The team hasn't made an official announcement just yet so it's unclear what other details may have changed from season to season.

This Statement Edition will join the two regular jerseys, Icon Edition (standard blue) and Association Edition (standard white), alongside the recently unveiled Classic Edition jerseys that feature a throwback to the 70s look with that very interesting "Seventy Sixers" across the front and Ben Simmons sitting in a dope old-school car.

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