A Nugget of Hope? Sixers travel to Denver

The Sixers wrap up their three-game away spree tonight in Denver following a heartbreaking loss to Sacramento last night due to a final possession turnover.

Philly scored 70 points in the first half alone which was great to watch. The team got off to a fantastic start but once again were unable to put the nail in the coffin as the Kings climbed out and buried the Sixers with just seconds remaining.

Jason Richardson returns to the starting lineup after being rested last night so he can play both games in the back to back. The vet has struggled with his shooting in recent weeks however. Shooting 23.7 percent from the floor and making just 5 of 30 three-point attempts in his last seven games. He has blamed his stresses on his absence from the league but has vowed to improve as time goes on.

Nerlens Noel seemed once again to get into foul trouble last night. He picked up two fouls in quick succession during the third quarter, his third and fourth personal fouls. DeMarcus Cousins was making life miserable for Noel, it’s easy to see why he got frustrated or made a few errors. Cousins had 33 points, 17 rebounds, four steals and four blocks on the night..

his frustrations may continue tonight though, Noel goes up against 6-foot-8 Kenneth Faried. Despite getting 14 points on Tuesday, Noel’s main focus for tonight has to be defence. Faried averages 12.1 points and 8.8 rebounds. Faried is a tank to say the least so he will have his work cut out. But if Noel can bring the same intensity and pressure he brung on Tuesday night in the first half, then he will be as consistent as his performances in recent months and a real obstacle for Faried.

Another big big factor tonight is Ty Lawson. He ranks third in the NBA in assists hitting around 9.7 per game. In 54 games Lawson has had 54 double-doubles, a staggering statistic showing just how lethal he is.  Ish Smith is the man who will be attempting to keep Lawson tamed tonight and he has the quickness to keep up him. But he needs to find more composure on the offensive side of things. Despite having seven assists on Tuesday, he also had seven turnovers. The Sixers are ranked bottom of the NBA in turnovers on over 17 a game. If they continue to commit similar errors tonight, it will cost them dearly.

I can’t see win number 18 surfacing tonight, the might of TY Lawson is going to be too much for Smith, but hey.. we’ve seen upsets like this before. (Cough, ATLANTA cough)