Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Oh Yeah....The Sixers


Lost amid the Eagles fuss and the Phillies glorious hangover lies a forgotten entity: the professional basketball team. Yes, the Sixers do still exist and in fact still play basketball games, some of which Sammy Dalembert (barely)contributes in. Therefore they remain worthy of our attention. How have they gone from priority #1 to somewhere between Johari Smith sightings and homeless man bio's in importance here, the very sight dedicated to staying current, diligent, and enthusiastic about them?

A quick list of reasons why we've lost track of the Sixers will hopefully provide some insight.

Reason 1)They suck

Reason 2)They aren't fun to watch.

Reason 3)Their problems seem fundamental and without obvious or overnight solutions, which make reasons 1 and 2 irredeemable.

Reason 4)Sammy D never plays anymore.

Reason 5)The NBA in January is akin to years 3-8 in a 10-year relationship. You got a dog, started a joint bank account, and started dressing the same without even noticing. Yee-ha. Not very interesting.

Still, I'm here to shine a light on The Sixers for a night because dammit they are still my team and doggoneit I remain vigilant in my hope they can turn things around. So let's review last nights 104-96 victory at home against the Artest-less Houston Rockets.

I arrive nice and early with my main man Giul and we make our way down to our seats, cough, cough, on the court. On our long arduous walk down to courtside we walk directly next to Ron Artest, who is not playing tonight but rehabbing an injury of some sort, thus shooting around before the game. He's on the sideline working out ticket details with an usher. I just want to say that this is not a man I want coming into the stand after me. He's large. With big muscles. And he's nuts.

The pre-game warm-ups are always interesting to watch up close. Andre Miller dribbles aimlessly for ten minutes, not talking to anyone, not looking up, giving off the aura of a guy who'd rather be almost anywhere but here. I don't like his barely tempered contempt for the situation.

Sammy D embraces Dikembe Mutombo at midcourt in a joyous exchange of broken English pleasantries. What a moment. A second later Yao Ming shows up and it's literally twenty-two feet of love just a few feet from where I am. I see the future dictators of Haiti, The Democratic Republic of Congo, and China in front of me and damn, it looks and sounds like freedom brewing.

Dikembe's knees and elbows scare me, even where covered in warm-ups. I mention to Giul that should he enter the game and chase a loose ball anywhere near me I will be evacuating post-haste.

We notice an odd looking player on the Rockets with a mohawk. We check out the roster list and try to determine who it could be. We decide on Von Wafer.

The dance team lines up in front of us for the national anthem. Their booty shorts resemble bedazzled diapers and I stare accordingly.

The introductions begin. Five minutes later they are still beginning. This is ridiculous. Just announce the friggin players names and let's play basketball. The one bright spot during the interminable video montage is a clip of my favorite Sixer from 1993-1996, Clarence Weatherspoon. I openly wonder what 'Spoon is up to these days. Giul says he's an announcer. I make it my duty to figure this out by midnight.

The game begins and I'm stunned that A)the mohawk indeed belongs to Von Wafer B)Von Wafer starts for Houston and C)Von Wafer is not a vampire from Dusseldorf.

Two other crucial details you should know about Von Wafer:
1) His shorts are entirely too tight.
2) He's wearing an elastic knee brace. On his ankle. I know it sounds weird but I stared at it for 3 hours and it was real.
*I'd like to remind everyone that other crucial details which were already mentioned but cannot be overstressed are that his name is Von Wafer and he has a mohawk. I make it a point to find out what planet this man came from and what his mission on Earth is.

This crowd could be at a funeral. It's so quiet that I feel awkward. You can hear everything the players are saying, which consists mostly of play calls and defensive switches disguised as unintelligible grunts.

Sammy picks up two fouls in the first three minutes. To the bench he trots. He will not come back this half.

Iguodala is playing well.

Tracy McGrady can't make a shot and looks in pain. Having seen Kobe and Lebron recently I can say T-Mac is not even close to that caliber of player anymore. His beard is also contrived.

Hip-Hop and the Hare Raisers make an appearance and the crowd makes noise for the first time all night. I pose this question: do all these people think they are at a basketball game with intermittent entertainment provided by a lame rabbit mascot and his band of merry ass-clowns, or at a performance by a lame rabbit mascot and his band of merry ass-clowns with intermittent basketball? I'm truly concerned about the future of rooting in this country.

The highlight of the night: with 2:56 left in the 3rd quarter a time-out is called. The ball rolls down the floor towards Sammy D, who is now in the game. He stops it with his foot, kicks it up in the air, and with another deft touch kicks it to the ref. I'm dazzled. Pure athletic brilliance by our boy.

Sammy picks up fouls 3 and 4. He trots to the bench. He will not return.

Marreese Speights dunks the ball. He's playing great. It's also feeling very natural to call him Reese.

Royal Ivey wears New Balance sneakers.

Von Wafer has scored in double digits. Who is this freak?

During a time-out in the 4th quarter they play a video montage with Mass Appeal by Gang Starr as the music. I'm impressed. They follow it up with Montell Jordan. Well done.

The most terrible person in the world is sitting behind us spewing negative garbage at Sixers players, specifically Iguodala and Andre Miller. This guy is a caricature of an imbecilic Philly fan. It's almost fake how awful he is. Plus he has a ponytail, and a voice that could substitute for an alarm clock buzzer. Seriously, this is the worst person ever.

Sixers pull ahead and finish strong. McGrady can't make a shot. Yao stays on the bench in the 4th quarter. So does the Rockets best player tonight, Von Wafer.

We win.

Sammy, optimistic and joyous as ever, takes part in the post-game huddle at center court. I don't have the guts to tell him about the DR.

12 comments:

  1. Apparently it takes us naming Giul to compel his participation. I like the way you roll, sir.

    A win is a win is a win. Even with Sammy getting less minutes than Mac Marston, I feel a solid win against a solid team may even get us another win. More than two is a stretch though.

    Spoon was a great, sometimes forgotten sixer. I mean his name alone is tremendous. He also represents the finest era in Sixers jersey.

    I request more details on Yao's hugeness too. What a freak. were his parents there?

    great post, Chief.

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  2. Chief Naka holding it down!

    "Yo, I luh Von Wafer...Boh-hom line." He was a NOLE and I've never even heard of him; despicable. He's no Al Thornton, but hey, he's a starter in the pros, has a mohawk and a knee brace-ankle brace. That strange planet he comes from is most likely the state of Florida.

    Corey Haim should marry the beauty queen "And such as."

    Young Thad's follow on Iggy's bricked dunk was IN-credible.

    Sixers are only 14 games back and the Celtics are on a skid of losing to terrible teams. Maybe the Sixies can get in on that action.

    Big Firm, get it straight: Sammy D gets less PT than Ted Mann.

    I watched the Flyers lose another shoot-out in overtime last night; what the frig?! Disclaimer; I know most of you don't care. Still, you may have to start caring about the Fly-boys, who are good and fun to watch, as opposed to the recent Sixers performances which are uninspired, boring, devoid of fights, and frequently resulting in L's. Hopefully, they can turn it around.

    Any predictions on Birds v. Giant(buttholes)s?

    Go birds.

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  3. Since being introduced to the DR I have judged posts based on how much they make me laugh out loud. I have to say this post had me rollin' the funniest I think I have read so far!

    On a more sensitive note: I LOVE THE DR. Its such a great way to connect with some old friends I truly miss! I read it at 3am when I am feeding (not breast) my 6 month old.

    Mike W

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  4. Finding out 'Spoon's current personal and professional status proved harder than I thought. Or maybe I was wasting too much time trying to figure out who Von Motherfucking Wafer is. Either way I'm no closer to having a clue about either. I will push on.

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  5. Yeah right, Mike, you know this is you:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zjoDvdkBy2k

    Congrats on the little ones.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Also, we need to come up with a good DR alias/monicker/nickname for Mike.

    Might I suggest "Big Poppa" or "Raleigh Towel?"

    ReplyDelete
  7. This is what needs to be going on in the Wachovia Center Home Locker Room...
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0gGX-Fxx52M


    Solid W tonight!

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  8. BTW Von Wafer hit a game winner against Boston last night...Bill Walton is making a case for him to be MVP...

    Mike W

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  9. Hey Bambara, guess Leo Rautins had him pegged huh? Listen up ladies, this is what happens when a stupid Bassa thinks he know something about a sport he see on TV. He ends up suckin up his words like the Wolof BITCH that he/she is! YOU SUCK AS MUCH AS THAT FAG DALLY DOES BEMBA!

    ReplyDelete
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    ReplyDelete