This week’s star goes to rookie Dario Saric. The forward averaged 15 points on 45 percent shooting to help the Sixers to a 2 – 1 record for the week. As the 76ers lineup continues to develop it appears the young pup has found his landing spot.
The Croatian seems to be oblivious to the minutes crunch felt early in the season by Nerlens Noel, and currently being felt by Jahlil Okafor and Richaun Holmes. Saric played 23 minutes per this week, which is on par with his season average of 24 minutes per. The consistency in minutes has allowed the reserve forward a chance to flourish, despite experiencing ups and downs offensively.
In a 121 – 110 victory against the Los Angeles Clippers the forward’s activity was impossible to ignore. Dario grabbed eight rebounds and went 8-for-9 from the foul line on his way to a +15 performance. Saric’s scoring touch returned (17 points) in a rare 114 - 109 road win versus the Milwaukee Bucks.
The week ended with a tough 118 – 123 home loss against the Houston Rockets. Once again effort and activity were the sixth man’s calling card. The rookie finished with 12 points and four rebounds. As the season continues Saric has proven he is more comfortable coming off the bench, and has refined his role as a role player.
STAT OF THE WEEK:
The Big Five
The Sixers are the worst team in the NBA at taking care of the ball, ranking dead last with 17.1 turnovers a game. However, for one night they were among the NBA’s best. Playing against the Los Angeles Clippers Philly turned the ball over only five times. A staggering number considering just how wretched this team has been this season.
Turnovers have been a nuisance during head coach Brett Brown’s tenure. Much of this can be attributed to the revolving door that has been the point guard position since the coach’s arrival. Nevertheless, Brown has to do a better job of getting the squad to be more judicial when making decisions with the rock.
For one night Philadelphia did just that, now the question remains was this a new trend or a mere aberration?
THIS WEEK IN 1982 – 83 (THE CHAMPIONSHIP YEAR):
It would take 23 days into 1983 before the 76ers would sustain their first loss. A 107 – 96 rare defeat at the hands of the Milwaukee Bucks. The Bucks’ duo of Sidney Moncrief and Marques Johnson were just too much for Philly to overcome. The two netted 59 points, 23 rebounds and 13 assists on 52 percent shooting. Holding Moncrief to just six first half points helped the Sixers to a 60 – 56 halftime lead. A 24 point second half explosion by the aforementioned former Arkansas Razorback would allow Milwaukee to take the lead and eventually win the game. The Bucks defense also showed its worth by holding Philadelphia’s trio of Moses Malone, Andrew Toney and Julius Erving to 23 for 56.
That losing feeling was short lived, as Philly traveled to Chicago and handed the Bulls a 116 – 99 defeat. After experiencing foul trouble in Milwaukee, guard Andrew Toney had a team high 24 points.
The 76ers finished the week 4-and-1.
TWEET OF THE WEEK: