Sixers' Ivey, Kapono support Phillies

100709-sixers-400
76ers guard Royal Ivey played baseball up until high school. (Geoff Robins/Canadian Press/AP file photo)

Growing up in Queens, N.Y., Sixers guard Royal Ivey's family was divided in their allegiances to the local professional baseball teams, and it has helped him form his opinion of who will win the World Series between the Phillies and New York Yankees.

"It was a divided house," Ivey said. "My mom [Jennifer] is from Queens, my pop [Rodney] is from the Bronx. So my mom is an avid Mets fan, like myself; my brother is a Yankees fan and my father is a Yankees fan."

He then laughed and said: "I'm pulling for the Phillies, if that's your next question."

Ivey played baseball up until high school, mostly at first base. He still follows the game and has watched the playoffs dutifully.

"I definitely don't like the Yankees," he said. "They never were my team growing up. I don't even own a Yankees hat. Wait, actually I do. My pop bought it for me as a gift the last year they were in the old Yankee Stadium, so it's a collector's item. That's the only Yankee hat I have, but I will never put it on my head."

Still, being a Mets fan, it can't be easy for Ivey to root for one of his team's rivals, can it?

"I know it's a rivalry [between the Mets and Phils] but you still have to root for the National League to pull it out," he said. "I don't want the Yankees to win. I'd rather have the Phillies go back-to-back. It hasn't been done since the Cincinnati Reds, so hopefully they pull it out. I definitely don't want the Yankees to win.

"I'm a big baseball fan. I love the history of the game. I haven't been able to get to any games, I've been busy. If I can get a ticket and get over to a game, then I will."

Forward Jason Kapono, who has attended some Phillies games during his stay here, including the NLCS clincher against the Dodgers, didn't hesitate when asked who would win the Series.

"Oh, Phillies in six, man," he said. "I think they sneak out one in the first two, then take it in six."

Kapono was happy about Phillies skipper Charlie Manuel's decision to go with Pedro Martinez in the second game. "He's a big-game pitcher."