By now all 76ers fans know that Elton Brand has been suspended by the NBA for his flagrant foul against JaVale McGee during Tuesday night's overtime loss to the Washington Wizards. Brand will be suspended, without pay, for tonight's game at the Toronto Raptors.
Just talked with Doug Collins about the suspension and he said the team found out a little after noon, but had been expecting it because Brand received a call from the NBA and that clearly wasn't a good sign. Per NBA rules, Brand is not at the Air Canada Centre and was not available for comment. Brand did say after Tuesday night's game that he did intend to foul McGee -- to keep him from getting an open dunk -- but that he did not intend for McGee to land so awkwardly.
“Just sort of another day in the 76ers right now,” Collins said about the suspension. “He’s been playing so well for us, he’s been terrific all year long. We’re going to definitely miss him.”
Without Brand, Collins will start Jrue Holiday, Evan Turner, Andre Iguodala, Thaddeus Young, and Spencer Hawes. The Raptors will likely start Jose Calderon, Sonny Weems, DeMar DeRozan, Reggie Evans, and Andrea Bargnani. Also, Toronto is expected to activate forward Peja Stojakovic and guard Jerryd Bayless, the two players acquired from the New Orleans Hornets in the Nov. 20 trade. It will be the first game for both players since the trade.
The Sixers are still without forward Jason Kapono, who will miss his second consecutive game for personal reasons. Collins said he would activate rookie Craig Brackins and that he might get Brackins some time, especially because Brackins is a decent matchup against the Raptors active big men.
It's probably a good thing the Sixers have a back-to-back after last night's loss to the Wizards. I would imagine both Evan Turner and Jrue Holiday need to get back onto the court and get rid of the taste of those bad plays that tainted what would have been a very solid victory.
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