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Evan Turner, Sixers defend first place in Atlantic Division

Mar 7, 2012, 11:49 PM EST

Evan Turner Getty Images

The winner of this contest was going to have the lead the Atlantic Division when the final horn sounded, so we expected a game with a playoff feel.

Instead, we got another lockout game — Boston looked tired and flat on the second night of a road back to back and got routed by Philadelphia, 103-71. Philly was home and motivated to defend the top spot they had all season, Boston just was not physically or mentally ready to challenge them.

We learned nothing about the fate of the Atlantic division in this one. We didn’t learn anything… well, that’s not true, we learned one thing:

Someone at a Philly newspaper should write a column every day saying the Sixers need to cut their losses and trade Evan Turner. Or that Turner has “undisclosed problems” that were holding back his play (something else that was published but team denied later).

Turner came out motivated, attacked the paint off the dribble from the start and finished with a career high 26 points on 19 shots, plus he had 9 rebounds. He looked like what the Sixers hoped they were getting with the No. 2 overall pick, not the player who has struggled to fit into Doug Collins system. He was hot early and sparked the Sixers blowout win.

Philadelphia came out more aggressive than they have seemed in recent weeks. Turner was the ringleader but all the Sixers were attacking the rim. Elton Brand was playing well, the Sixers got out and ran and before you could blink the Sixers were up 9 and had 16 of their first 20 points in the paint. That energy carried over all game as the Sixers were up 33-17 after one quarter. Boston had no energy to counter and shot just 36 percent for the quarter.

It got worse for the men in green. Boston was shooting 10-31 and had 21 points midway through the second, meanwhile Sixers went on a 14-0 run to pull away and lead by as many as 28. It was 55-33 Philly at the break as Boston shot 34 percent for the half. The Sixers missed too, but they had 11 offensive rebounds.

Boston looked like an old team in a condensed schedule ad is now in 0-6 on second game of road back-to-back. Paul Pierce had 16 but this was a garbage time fourth quarter where both teams just played their benches.

We really didn’t learn anything about the fate of the Atlantic Division in this game. We know both teams want to win it (as do the Knicks) because it means at least a four seed in the East, meaning you avoid Miami and Chicago in the first round. The Sixers had one good night, we’ll see if they can carry it over.

Same goes for Evan Turner.

  1. bleed4philly - Mar 8, 2012 at 7:13 AM

    Finally!

  2. jagwar73 - Mar 8, 2012 at 7:31 AM

    Stan Van Gundy would have blown that lead. Stan’s motto is “if you’re hot, come sit beside me on the bench”. We can’t have any one player scoring too many points, now can we? New lead is safe with Stan Van Gundy as your coach!

  3. sgtr0c - Mar 8, 2012 at 8:26 AM

    Since the start of this season, the Sixers have been in the lead of the division. Your stories were about how it was a mirage. Yesterdays story was about how it was only a matters of hours before the celtics would be tied for the division lead.
    I think we have learned that you writers are 0-2. Maybe the Sixers won’t win the division, but just like the Philly papers on E. T., maybe your writers can keep on writing about Sixers having no shot.

  4. 700levelvet - Mar 8, 2012 at 9:04 AM

    Earlier this week or last week, the rumors were abundant about the Celtics trading Rondo,or his being available, or teams inquiring, etc… and for the life of me, i couldn’t understand why.After watching this game i understand why….The Celtics are OLD….Really OLD, he runs up court and has to wait 5 seconds for the geraratric crowd to catch up to him…..Anyway as a Sixer fan a 32 point blowout of the celts is sweet…..

  5. andyreidisfat - Mar 8, 2012 at 2:11 PM

    Just one more glaring reason to trade iggy for a decent big. Turner is a point forward who needs the ball and last night is proof of that.

    Trade iggy and holiday for fisher and gasol and let’s put a scare into the bulls an heat !

    • slopmcflop - Mar 8, 2012 at 2:55 PM

      I don’t care who you are or what the situation is, but as soon as someone mentions trading FOR Derek Fisher? Lose all credibility. You’d be better off trading for Kobe’s used jockstrap. At least that thing you know will stick on a guy.

    • tcclark - Mar 8, 2012 at 7:01 PM

      A line-up of Holiday-Bryant-Iguodala-who cares-Bynum would certainly scare the Bulls and Heat

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