Thursday, July 27, 2006


Changing the Culture
Unlesss I see Kevin Garnet or Carmelo Anthony suiting up with AI this season I will not call Billy King a genius. But, by no means will I call the President/ General Manager of the Sixers stupid. After two months of wondering where Allen Iverson would end up, the expectations are over and we can know get back to the 76ers reality: The roster, the way it is right now will probably mean another trip to Draft Night as a lottery team.
Billy King has decided not to trade the best little man that has ever played this game. Not that he had a strong change of heart or that he realized how idiotic that idea was. Billy was simply not stupid enough to pull the plug. Iverson was on the trading block, BK publicly stated that he would change the culture of the team. He made the mistake of sounding desperate and when other GM’s figured that out, they offered him garbage for a future Hall of Famer. Billy didn’t bite, but…does it matter.
When almost being traded during the 2000 off-season, AI came back with a ridiculous vengeance. The sixers had their best season in over a decade and the team won most of the player awards. (MVP, Coach of the Year, Defensive Player of the year, sixth man, and all star game MVP) Is Billy expecting this now that AI has been publicly embarrassed? Has BK noticed that his culture changing subtractions only include, Barnes, Salmons and Bradley? Does Billy Queen think that Rodney Carney is THAT good? I know I won’t see Aaron Mackie, Eric Snow or George Lynch coming out of the locker room on opening night. I do know I will see a confused Sam Dalambert, an overpaid Korver, a shy Iguodala, a Diva in Chris Webber and an Allen Iverson who will have no choice but to score over 30 a game again for the sixers to have a shot.
If the sixers’ management wanted a change of culture they began with the wrong foot. Hinting about trading your best player wasn’t the way to go, especially when the best player they almost got was Carlos Boozer.
I agree with a change of culture that enhances your assets and basically improves what you already have. The reality of this is that the Sixers are not far away from improvement, they are just lost. For over half of last season the Sixers had a good team, a team that could score on anyone but did not have a defensive hair on their heads. Maurice Cheeks, as beloved as he once was in Philly is nobody’s head coach. He probably is the best assistant coach in the universe but he’s no head coach. No head coach in the league can win without discipline. By no means could he get through his players when Chris Webber makes decisions for him. There is no way in the world that he can lead his team when he can’t get Sammy D to play hard every night. I know that the Sixers are paying millions to coaches that are not with the team but why stop now. You want a change of culture, start with Mo.
I expect next season to be about the same. A lot of scoring, a lot of AI2 monster dunks, new Carney Highlights and some C-Webb prima Donna outbursts. In the end, no culture change, no coaching change and no post season….


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