Saturday, August 30, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Sixers Torched By Sizzling Durant

The 76ers were Sixers beaten by Kevin Durant's all-world performance.

Sixers Torched By Sizzling Durant


After the 76ers lost a heart-breaking 110-105 overtime decision to the Oklahoma City Thunder, the critics were coming out with plenty of theories why this should have been a win.

Sure the Sixers were up five points with under a minute to play and could have closed the deal. Yet sometimes the other team deserves credit. Plus the Sixers were simply beaten by one of the best players in the universe.

Kevin Durant's three-pointer with 6.9 seconds left that tied the game at 101-101 in regulation was a thing of beauty, unless you happened to be Andre Iguodala and the Sixers.

Still, there were people after the game, including Elton Brand, who suggested that it never should have happened, that Durant shouldn't have caught the ball.

As this reporter told Brand - "Easier said than done."

Even Brand had to nod in agreement.

Durant has such a quick trigger and receives great screens that he got open and made an all-world shot.

By the way, would LeBron James have made that shot? Dwyane Wade? Carmelo Anthony?

Maybe Dirk Nowitzki or Kobe Bryant make that shot, but the list of players who can match Durant in a big spot can be counted on one hand. Durant, for all his greatness, is still slightly under the radar. He is so smooth and can get his shot off against any defender.

What's interesting is that Sixers coach Doug Collins has said he doesn't have a true go-to guy so it's sometimes harder to defender because teams don't know who will take the big shot.

That may be true, but Collins or anybody else would love to have the alternative - a player like Durant who everybody knows will get the ball and nobody can stop.

Iguodala talked about how the Sixers didn't communicate on that three and all that may be true. But Oklahoma City, with the way it sets screens had somethng to do with it.

No doubt this one will sting.

"This was a disappointing loss," Collins said.

Of course it was, but it took an exceptional play by an exceptional player to break the Sixers backs.

And by the way, Oklahoma City guard Russell Westbrook isn't down too far on the greatness meter himself.

Durant and Westbrook combined for 61 points. They are both so young, skilled and athletic and both have extremely high basketball IQ's.

It isn't much consolation for the Sixers that they lost to one of the best scoring tandems in the game. The 19,283 fans saw greatness up close.

And unfortunately so did the Sixers on a night when Oklahoma City would have lost going away had its two stars been merely very good.

 




Each week, Kate will check in from the road and answer fan questions about the Sixers. Click hereto ask Kate a question or e-mail her at kfagan@phillynews.com.

Download our new iPhone/Android app for all of Kate's Sixers coverage, plus app-exclusive analysis and videos.

Marc Narducci Inquirer Columnist
About this blog

Keith Pompey is in his first season covering the Sixers for The Inquirer after covering the Temple men’s basketball team for the past three years and Temple football the past two seasons.

Marc Narducci has served in a variety of roles with the Inquirer since beginning in 1983. He has covered the 76ers as a backup and a beat writer. In addition, Narducci has covered everything from the Super Bowl to the World Series and a lot in between.

Narducci also has a true passion for South Jersey scholastic sports, which he has covered for many years.

Keith Pompey Inquirer Staff Writer
Marc Narducci Inquirer Columnist
Latest Videos:
Also on Philly.com:
Stay Connected
Topics: