(Hopefully) good sports essays and observations for good sports by a guy who tries (and can sometimes fail) to be a good sport.


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Tuesday, December 08, 2009

And the 76ers Said It Was a Basketball Decision

The circus showed up in town last night in Philadelphia. Allen Iverson got a dramatic introduction, and, yes, he kissed the floor upon being introduced. The 76ers ordered and probably sold a bunch of Iverson jerseys, and they almost sold out the Wachovia Center. Oh, yeah, they lost to the Denver Nuggets, but everyone in the organization seemed all smiles.

Because even though the team has played terribly, they played to an almost packed house, they got some good ink on the sports pages (for a moment they were second to the Eagles and ahead of the Flyers and Phillies, and the latter have been getting good ink given that their season ended about a month ago), and as Mike Missanelli said on ESPN Radio, the 76ers are relevant again.

And, as Archie Bunker would have said on All in the Family, "a whoop tee doo."

And as one of my mentors would have said, "So?"

It's interesting that on his 60 Minutes interview disgraced former referee Tim Donaghy offered that basketball is entertainment, not a sports competition anymore. As I've written from time to time, sometimes people we don't like say things that make sense, and sometimes people we respect don't. Donaghy makes a decent point, and the 76ers' actions over the course of the past week bring it home.

Because last night was all about entertainment. It wasn't really about winning a basketball game.

That would have been icing on the cake.

And, given the atmosphere at the Wacky Wach, with the scantily clad dancing girls designed to distract the fans away from the grim reality of contemporary professional basketball, perhaps icing on the cheesecake.

Let the ticket buyers beware!


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