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News » For 76ers, it's back to basics

For 76ers, it's back to basics

For 76ers, it's back to basics After yesterday's 76ers practice, assistant coaches Randy Ayers and Jim Lynam took a few minutes with the big men, going over the finer details of guarding the pick-and-roll.

Samuel Dalembert asked a few questions, Elton Brand nodded.

The Sixers are in need of sharpening such skills after Wednesday night's lopsided, season-opening loss to the Orlando Magic.

The Sixers now play the Milwaukee Bucks tonight in their home opener at the Wachovia Center. It will be the first game for the Bucks, who are led by speedy point guard Brandon Jennings, the team's first-round pick in the 2009 NBA draft.

The Sixers flew home from Orlando with widened eyes: They trailed by as many as 31 points, and allowed the Magic 70 points in the first half and 16 made three-pointers.

"That's been the history of our team," said point guard Lou Williams, whose 18 points on Wednesday made him the only Sixers starter in double figures. "They shoot threes, and we're attacking the basket and shooting twos. It's hard to play threes-and-twos, threes-and-twos - you're going to get blown out every night if a team shoots like that. . . . There are things we need to tweak on defense."

Added Williams: "We got our butts handed to us, which is an eye-opener for us."

The Sixers spent about 90 minutes on the court yesterday at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine. Coach Eddie Jordan said the team watched film beforehand, analyzing clips of eight or nine offensive plays where they executed well and got a good shot.

"We're not quite there, yet," Jordan said. "We knew it would be a process to get to a level where we're really clicking. When that happens, it's going to be a beautiful thing to be a part of, and I know that."

Jordan said showing clips of successful offensive sets showed his team that, when executing properly and dedicating themselves to the offense, open looks are created.

"We're taking baby steps, we're growing," Brand said. "We're still trying to find our way through the offense, execute."

Jordan said if he spent more time on offense during practice, the team would be further along, but he must also bring along the defense.

In recent years, the Sixers have struggled to defend the perimeter: They've struggled to effectively stop the pick-and-roll and, within possessions, that has ended in open three-pointers. Jordan said Wednesday night's onslaught by the Magic was different.

"I saw Vince Carter make two threes well beyond the three," Jordan said. "We're not going to guard that, anyway."

"It's disappointing," said Brand of Orlando's three-pointers. "It was discouraging."

Contact staff writer Kate Fagan at 856-779-3844 or

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Added: October 30, 2009


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