The Focus Of Opening Night

This is a Sixers opening night with no surprises, at least none so far.

The starting lineup is as has been advertised: Thaddeus Young, Andre Miller, Samuel Dalembert, Elton Brand and Andre Iguodala.

The inactive list is as expected: The injured Jason Smith and rookie Marreese Speights.

Royal Ivey, serving the second leg of a three-game suspension incurred late last season as a member of the Milwaukee Bucks, isn't--by NBA rule-- in the Wachovia Center. But he does count against the active roster, leaving the team with 11 available bodies, one under the league limit.

Sixers coach Maurice Cheeks is focused on how his team performs, but says of the Raptors, ''Their main focus is Chris Bosh.''

Raptors coach Sam Mitchell doesn't expect the Sixers to vary from the running style they showed last season, but says of Elton Brand ''He's an added talent, a potential All-Star. He's a guy coming off an injury, but everyone knows what a healthy Elton Brand can do. He's a 20/10 guy.''

Historical note: Steve Javie, tonight's referee crew chief, and the veteran Tony Brothers are joined by former player Haywoode Workman in his debut. Workman becomes the third former player to turn to officiating in the league, following Bernie Fryer and Leon Wood.

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