The Post Game Show

Thursday, February 24, 2005

It's On Again

Story Courtesy of

Sixers Trade Brian Skinner, Kenny Thomas, Corliss Williamson for Webber, Matt Barnes and Michael Bradley

Sixers Acquire Five-Time All-Star Chris Webber in Six-Player Deal

posted Feb. 23, 2005

Philadelphia 76ers President and General Manager Billy King announced tonight that the Sixers have acquired five-time NBA All-Star forward Chris Webber, along with forwards Matt Barnes and Michael Bradley, in exchange for forwards Brian Skinner, Kenny Thomas and Corliss Williamson.

Drafted with the No. 1 overall selection of the 1993 NBA Draft by the Orlando Magic, Webber’s draft rights were traded to the Golden State Warriors for Anfernee Hardaway and draft picks. Webber won Rookie-of-the-Year honors in 1994 and has since been selected to the All-NBA team five times. He was a first-team selection in 2001; earned second-team honors in 2003, 2002 and 1999; and was a third-team winner in 2000. This season, Webber is averaging 21.3 points, 9.7 rebounds, 5.5 assists, 1.48 steals, and 0.74 blocks in 36.3 minutes over 46 games (46 starts). He has registered single-game highs of 36 points, 17 rebounds, 12 assists, four steals and three blocks in 2004-05 and was named the NBA’s Western Conference Player of the Month for January 2005.

The University of Michigan product has career averages of 22.0 points, 10.1 rebounds, 4.5 assists, 1.61 blocks, and 1.5 steals in 38.1 minutes per game over 665 contests in his 12-year career with Golden State (1993-94), Washington (1994-98), and Sacramento (1998-2005). The 6-foot-10, 245 pound native of Detroit has played in 59 career playoff games, averaging 21.1 points, 9.6 rebounds, 4.3 assists, 1.39 blocks, and 1.2 steals in 39.2 minutes. He has played in four All-Star games (1997, 2000, 2001 and 2002), missing the 2003 game due to injury.

Barnes, a 6-foot-7, 226-pound second-year player, has career averages of 4.1 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 1.3 assists in 81 games. Drafted by the Memphis Grizzlies in the second round (46th overall) of the 2002 NBA Draft, the UCLA product’s draft rights were traded along with Nick Anderson to the Cleveland Cavaliers for Wesley Person. He was waived by the Cavaliers on Oct. 18, 2002, and spent the 2002-03 season with the NBDL’s Fayetteville Patriots. Barnes landed in Los Angeles last season where he played 38 games for the Clippers.

This season in Sacramento, he’s played in 43 games with averages of 3.8 points and 3.1 rebounds. The 6-foot-10, 225-pound Bradley was selected after his junior season at Villanova University by the Toronto Raptors with the 17th overall pick of the 2001 NBA Draft. He has played 125 career games with Toronto (2001-04), Atlanta (2003-04), Orlando (2004-05) and Sacramento (2004-05). Signed by Orlando as a free agent on July 29, 2004, he was included in the trade that sent Kings forward Doug Christie to the Magic in exchange for Bradley and Cuttino Mobley on January 10, 2005. Bradley has averaged 1.5 points and 1.6 rebounds per game over 16 contests, eight games each with the Magic and Kings, this season. In his four-year NBA career, the Worcester, Mass., native has compiled averages of 3.3 points and 3.8 rebounds in 13.1 minutes per game.

Skinner, a 6-foot-9 forward, has played in 24 games for the Sixers this season while averaging 2.0 points and 2.6 rebounds in 10.3 minutes per game. He has missed 13 games due to injury with left knee synovitis. A first round draft pick (22nd overall) by the Clippers in the 1998 NBA Draft, the former Baylor product has seen action with the L.A. Clippers (1998-01), Cleveland (2001-02), Philadelphia (2002-03 and 2004-05) and Milwaukee (2003-04). Skinner enjoyed his best season in 2003-04 by averaging 10.5 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.09 blocks per game with the Bucks. He has appeared in the playoffs with two teams: Philadelphia (2002-03) and Milwaukee (2003-04). In his seventh NBA season, he has career averages of 5.5 points, 4.9 rebounds and 18.8 minutes per game in 315 games (103 starts).

Thomas, a 6-foot-7 forward, is averaging 11.3 points and 6.6 rebounds per game in 47 contests (43 starts) this season. Thomas has scored 20 or more points eight times and has seven double-doubles. Versus Milwaukee on Dec. 14, he grabbed 17 rebounds, the most by a Sixers player this season. Currently in the midst of his sixth NBA season, Thomas has career averages of 10.7 points, 7.3 rebounds and 29.9 minutes in 405 games (278 starts). He was acquired by Philadelphia on Dec. 18, 2002, from Houston. In 2003-04, the University of New Mexico product was one of 11 players in the NBA to average a double-double (13.6 ppg, 10.1 rpg) and ranked among the NBA leaders in rebounds per game (9th, 10.1), offensive rebounds per game (4th, 3.5), double-doubles (13th, 34) and field goal percentage (33rd, .469). He scored a career-high 31 points at Golden State on March 24, 2002, and had a 20-point, 20-rebound game at Orlando (3/31/03) with 24 points and 20 rebounds, the first by a 76ers player since Jan. 2, 1997. During his career with Houston, who drafted him 22nd overall in the 1999 NBA Draft, he averaged 9.8 points, 6.3 rebounds and 28.1 minutes in 238 games (135 starts) and led the Rockets in total rebounds as a rookie (437), standing with Elton Brand as the only rookies to lead their team in total rebounds.

Williamson has played in 48 games (5 starts) for the 76ers this season. The 6-foot-7 forward has scored 10 or more points 28 times and has had two games with 20 or more points, both in games that Allen Iverson did not dress. He has averaged 10.8 points, 3.7 rebounds and 22.0 minutes per game this season. He missed four games this season due to a left knee MCL sprain suffered at San Antonio (12/1). Currently in his 10th NBA season, he was named the 2002 NBA Sixth Man after averaging 13.6 points per game with 51.0 percent shooting with Detroit. Williamson has also played with Sacramento (1995-00), Toronto (2000-01) and Detroit (2001-04). Last season, he helped the Pistons to an NBA championship and can also count an NCAA championship with Arkansas in 1994. Selected by the Kings in the first round (13th overall pick), he has career averages of 11.8 points, 4.1 rebounds and 23.9 minutes in 693 games (288 starts).
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I think this pretty much says that the Sixers are contenders again. Let's Go!

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Breakdown at the All-Star Break

The last time the NBA All-Star game was held in Denver, Walter Mondale was a few months away from asking Ronald Reagan "Where's the beef," Tina Turner was asking "What's love got to do it with it,"The league's best player today wasn't even born yet, and folks were in the Rocky Mountains asking "did you hear they're bringing back the dunk contest?" 1984 was a good year, too bad as someone who turned three years old that September I don't remember much about it. But with the NBA showcasing its brightest stars for the World to see, it's time to review the NBA first half, and forecast what will happen in the second half of the season.

MVP: LeBron quote one of my favorite comedians George Wallace, "Yeah, I said it!" Not even old enough to drink, King James is really starting to put all the hype questions to rest (as if they were still there after his amazing rookie year) and make himself a viable Most Valuable Player candidate. I would give it to Steve Nash, but the Suns still have to beat the Spurs to prove to me that they can be a championship team. For LeBron to turn a bunch of jabronies into Central Division contenders at 20 years old is simply remarkable.

Best team: Miami Heat....what a difference a diesel makes, doesn't it? Shaq and Dwayne Wade have turned what was already an up-and-coming team without Shaq into NBA championship contenders. And with Shaq actually liking his younger, smaller running buddy, the Heat is hitting on all cylinders in a weak Eastern Conference, and aside from Detroit, no one can pose much of a threat to the South Beach Slammers.

Disappointing Team: Minnesota Timberwolves...The year started with Latrell Sprewell saying 7 million dollars wasn't enough to feed his family (It is if you shop at Save-A-Lot, patnah!) and has seen Flip Saunders' coaching career become "Game Over." It might end with Kevin Garnett missing the playoffs for the first time since he was a rookie, 10 years ago, so what does Basketball Operations Chief Kevin McHale need to do to turn this team around? Get rid of Sprewell and Sam Cassell, but no one will take on two 35-year old crybabies. What a mess for a team that was two games from the NBA finals last spring.

Rookie of the year: Tough race and entirely too early to call, but I give it to Orlando's Dwight Howard. Emeka Okafor plays on an expansion team right now, so it's hard to give it to him over Howard, who is a double-double machine for a playoff team in the Magic right now.

Now for a special "I told you so award": Atlanta's Josh Smith, a kid that ESPN analyst Jay Bilas said was a wasted first rounder for the Hawks. All Mr. Smith has done has dunked on everybody, showed suprising defensive skills, and may very well be the next Dominique Wilkins for a team that has been pretty much garbage since 'Nique left town 11 years ago. Note to analysts who never played in the NBA: chill. The kid probably has more talent in his hangnails than you ever did in your entire body.

So let us look forward to the second half and see what will happen (at least in my opinion):

Team to break out of the doldrums: Minnesota Timberwolves....I predict this team will pull it together and sneak into the playoffs because KG will not be sitting at home in April, something he probably doesn't even remember doing. Somebody will send Latrell Sprewell's family a C.A.R.E. package and get Sam Cassell a face transplant, and the T-Wolves should be good to go.

Team to slide in the second half: Boston Celtics...The Sixers have far too much talent to keep playing Musical Chairs with first place in the Atlantic Division, so look for A.I. and company to propel themselves past Boston for the title, but the Celtics will still make the playoffs because the Pacers are fading fast themselves.

Most Important Player in the second half: Kobe Bryant.....o.k., now you've run off two coaches, the best big man of our generation, now what are you going to do, Michael Jordan's jockstrap sniffer? Let's see what you're made of, can you get the Lakers to the playoffs?

And that is your NBA All-Star break awards, I hope you enjoyed them as much as I enjoyed giving you the real, which is what I do best. O.K., maybe not, but you know you like them.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Super Bowl Summaries and MEAC Musings

"They can come closer than close, yeah/....original, they never will be/....we just trying to make you see/nobody does it better......."

Nate Dogg with Warren G., "Nobody Does It Better," 1997

With that bit of fitting lyricism, I present to you the back-to-back, three times in four years Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots. It is a dynasty, like it or not. These guys are probably the most disrespected champions of any sport in any day, and year in and year out, they just continue to get it done. They needed a running back, so they traded for Corey Dillon, originally thought to be a problem child, but all homey did was rush for 1500 yards and provide the Patriots with that between the tackles thunder that sets up their devious play action passing game. And Deion Branch (from...Louisville! 'Sup TJ) wins the MVP award, catching 11 passes and a Cadillac XLR, proving that every single player on that team has a role, and damn if they don't execute it to the fullest. They have a few free agents, and we know that Charlie Weis now leads the Fighting Irish and Romeo Crennel will try to bring the bite back to the Dawg Pound, but until somebody can find a way to play the perfect game against these guys, they cannot be beaten, they won't be beaten. For at least another two years.

On the other side of that coin, the Philadelphia Eagles played the most unfocused Super Bowl since the Falcons and their live-right safety Eugene Robinson was caught trying to pay to play with an undercover cop.

Was D McNabb sick or not? Did Freddie Mitchell ruin it for everyone by running his big, unproductive beak? Did Andy Reid have a brief bout of bird-brain syndrome in the last five minutes? Questions that have yet to be answered.

But one question that was answered is that Terrell Owens is a warrior, period. Broken ankle, nine catches for 122 yards. He looked gimpy, but didn't care. He thought he could help his team win, and damn near did so. I wonder if people will be quick to criticize this man, now that he went out on one wheel and turned in one of the biggest performances in the history of the Super Bowl.

What we know is that the two strongest teams from each conference made the Super Bowl, and probably will do so next year in Detroit. And it will probably be these same two teams again.

Hornet basketball keeps on rolling

Delaware State is experiencing something usually reserved for Hampton, Coppin State, and FAMU. Both men's and women's basketball teams are regarded as contenders for the MEAC title. Although this has been a two-year pattern, the third year might be the charm for this school, which would be a nice bit of publicity, and perhaps restore some pride here.

The men's basketball team has THE biggest game of their season tomorrow evening with Coppin in Baltimore. The Hornets are a half game ahead of The Eagles for first place in the MEAC, and considering this team has never won a MEAC regular season championship (ever), and what better way to put some distance between yourself and the rest of the field by going on the road to beat your nemesis and prove to yourselves once and for all you can run.

Coppin's defense was the stickiest of the icky when they came here in early January, but Darrin Shine didn't play that game because of the flu, and now that he's been able to penetrate at will along with Aaron Williams, this team has become good for 70-75 points a game. Although sometimes they play Coppin State like they're a Big Ten school, I think Coach Jackson understands now that he has athletes that are capable of zipping past the likes of....Hen-ry Col-ter.

Jahsha Bluntt will have to be in rhythm to put this team over the top. His shot will have to fall, like it has the last month or so, or else Terrance Hunter and Troy Roundtree will be responsible in the low post to get some points, which isn't as reliable as Jahsh's smooth stroke. However, I feel like this is the get over the hump year for DSU basketball, and this is one of those games. Prediction? DSU 65, Coppin 54.

The women will play the Lady Eagles, who are tied for first place and ended the home winning streak that lasted a year for the Lady Hornets last time out. Leisel Harry has not returned, yet CSU continues to fight with Hampton for first place, and are no easy win.

Terrelle Waller definitely has her shot back, but she missed the last 13 minutes of the UMES win after she took a blow to the head, so hopefully the week off has given her time to heal up and be ready to rock. The Lady Hornets are in third place right now, still with an outside shot to win the regular season crown, but Ed Davis' goal, in his words, is to be "nowhere near sixth," meaning the play-in round of the tournament, which means they'd have to play on Monday March 7th in the Ashe Center in Richmond, VA, the kickoff spot for the MEAC tourney. I hope they don't either, shucks I don't wanna be there until that Tuesday myself. If DSU can keep the score down like they've been doing, they'll win this game. Lady Hornets 51, CSU 48.

Now that football is over, I will be giving you my NBA thoughts along with the full college game, so the best is yet to come. Hope you enjoy it.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Streaking Hornets

Now before you get worried, no one is running around the campus of Delaware State University stark naked. O.K., bad black hippie joke.

Anyway, the men and women playing basketball at DSU are on a roll right now, with the men winning six in a row and the women winning four straight, it looks like Richmond VA might turn into Hornet territory for a week.

The men beat Howard 69-60 in a game that wasn't as close as the score. Although the guys looked tired at several points during the game, Greg Jackson and none of his players would use that as an excuse, they know they have to keep playing and they will. The win tied them for first place with Coppin State, with a showdown with the Eagles looming following Saturday's game against Maryland-Eastern Shore. It's easy to look past a team that's lost 16 in a row like UMES, but I think the men know that they have to take it game by game, but the stage should be set for a battle for first place in the MEAC.

The women are intent on staying out of the MEAC play-in round, even though they continue to play some really unpretty basketball. Terrelle Waller is starting to get her legs back, hitting a driving lay-up with seven seconds left that proved to be the difference in a 49-47 win over HU. Terrelle is still getting the majority of her points from the free throw line, but it's better for her to just get on the board anyway possible until her shots start to fall.

Rocky Collier led the team with 14 points, and I still say she's the leading candidate for Women's Rookie Of The Year. Yes, Rachel Butler from Hampton is doing a fantastic job, but that was expected of her. Rocky was just to be a mere role player in the Lady Hornet's quest for the crown, but with Mandy done for the year and Terrelle sidelined for just about half the season, Rocky's play has just been a pleasant surprise, and arguably a Godsend for Ed Davis. Now if the post players (Smith, Fauntleroy, Nugent, etc.) can give some kind of offensive stability, this team will be there at the end fighting for the MEAC championship.