No one expected the Sixers to beat the defending champs Miami Heat on opening night and certainly nobody expected to them to be 3-0 to start the season. The Sixers were expected to tank this season in an attempt to earn the first pick in the next draft to acquire Andrew Wiggins. #WinlessforWiggins was the fans plan and, even though the season is still young, it doesn’t seem like the Sixers want to stick to that plan. The Sixers are proving people wrong and it feels as if the fans are gravitating around the team’s hot start.
The great and unexpected start began on opening night when Allen Iverson announced his official retirement from basketball in a press conference before the game. The Sixers raced out to 19-0 lead in the first and the Wells Fargo Center was rocking with fan cheers and a little bit of optimism. Then the reigning and defending MVP LeBron James and the Miami Heat started to take over and held a lead most of the way putting down the Sixers early assault. But the young team was not phased by the title of defending Champs when it came to crunch time and pulled off a 114-110 upset. MCW in his first game showed that he wasn’t backing down by putting up 22 points, 12 assists, 9 steals, and 7 rebounds. Also MCW only had 1 turnover and went 4 for 6 from three point range. Center Spencer Hawes put up 24 points and pulled down 9 rebounds in 29 minutes of play. Hawes also played the toughest he’s ever had as a Sixer because when the game got really tight in crunch time Hawes was contesting all of LeBron James’ attempts to get to the basket.
The Sixers just kept that positive momentum going into the nation’s capital on Friday as they rolled into D.C. and picked up the 109-102 road win proving that their first win wasn’t just a fluke. The Sixers put themselves in a big hole early but the team put together a gritty second half flaunting young talent that had been previously underrated. Veterans Thad Young and Evan Turner led the way to victory as Young went for 29 points and 8 rebounds and Turner went for 23 points. Center Spencer Hawes played the all around game in the win as he scored 16 points, grabbed 14 rebounds, and dished out 5 assists. Michael Carter Williams had another challenge against one of the quickest point guards in the NBA. Wall had 26 points, 6 assists, and 5 rebounds. Although Wall outdid MCW on the stat sheet, Carter Williams showed an awareness of himself committing 2 turnovers early on and making sure they were the only ones he let up. Carter Williams still managed to put up 14 points, 5 assists, and 3 rebounds in the win.
The Sixers were coming home to their first 2-0 start since the 2006-2007 season but had another tough challenge in the Chicago Bulls. The Sixers came back, yet again, from a 20 point deficit and outlasted the Chicago Bulls 107-104. Center Spencer Hawes hit the game winning jumper with 5.9 ticks still on the clock and Hawes put up another double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds. Michael Carter Williams outplayed Derrick Rose on the court and on the stat sheet as MCW scored 26 points, dished out 10 assists, pulled down 4 rebounds and snagged 3 steals. The Sixers defense shut down the former MVP Derrick Rose keeping him to only 13 points, 6 assists, and 4 rebounds. Evan Turner added to the victory as he scored 20 points for the third straight as he had exactly 20 points. The Sixers are 3-0 for the first time since the 2006-2007 season after the win over the Bulls. Brett Brown said this about MCW after this win,
“I think the thing that stands out is that it’s a point guard’s league. And I think Michael Carter Williams is for real.”
All in all this is a dream start for the Sixers. MCW is leading the way with 3 veterans right behind him in Evan Turner, Thaddeus Young, and Spencer Hawes. Even if the team was expected to be bad and if they do start to lose, the Sixers are fun team to watch because they get out and run the fast break. No doubt we’ll all be rooting for the Sixers wins to keep piling up, but luckily if they start losing again we can all just start talking about the draft and how good we’ll be next season!
- Michael Carter-Williams outplays Derrick Rose in Sixers win over Bulls (nj.com)
- Michael Carter-Williams Leads Sixers (sixerpackinmyhand.wordpress.com)
- Sixers Start Strong, Still Winless for Wiggins? (brotherlysportstalk.wordpress.com)