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3 Observations From Overtime Win Over the Grizzlies

By Matt Gregan, Sports Talk Philly Staff Writer

The Philadelphia 76ers played one of their best games of the season, extending their winning streak to five by defeating the red-hot Memphis Grizzlies 122-119 in overtime.

The Sixers were without Joel Embiid, who received a well-deserved rest day after playing in a career-long 21 consecutive games, and yet the rest of the team stepped up and earned a wild win in front of a packed house at the Wells Fargo Center. The team was also without Furkan Korkmaz (left knee soreness) and Shake Milton (back contusion).

The Grizzlies had a chance at the end of overtime, but rookie Ziaire Williams missed a three from the corner and Matisse Thybulle made a heads-up play to, as he was falling out of bounds, throw the rebound back to half court to seal the win.

Ja Morant showed why he is a special player for Memphis, finishing with 37 points, five rebounds and five assists. Desmond Bane added 34 points, including making five of nine attempts from deep, to go with seven rebounds.

Tobias Harris continued his good stretch of basketball, scoring 31 points on 12-of-25 shooting en route to helping the Sixers get their best win of the season thus far.

The Sixers continue to be one of the hottest teams in the league since mid-December. They have won 15 of their last 18 games and currently sit at 31-19 on the season. Here are some observations from the win:

Maxey, Morant duel was incredible to watch

Everyone knows Morant is a star player capable of making plays in the big moments. Tonight proved Tyrese Maxey is ready to step onto the stage of the other young, good guards in the league.

Continue reading "3 Observations From Overtime Win Over the Grizzlies" »


Jake Elliott Headed To Pro Bowl

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By Paul Bowman, Sports Talk Philly Editor

The Rams moving on to the Super Bowl proved to be some good news for one Eagle on Monday morning.

Kicker Jake Elliott was announced as a new selection for the Pro Bowl event next weekend.

The kicker, who many Philadelphia fans felt was snubbed in the fan voting earlier this year, will take the place of Matt Gay of the Rams. Of course, Gay is unable to attend the Pro Bowl as he will be preparing for a much bigger game.

Continue reading "Jake Elliott Headed To Pro Bowl" »


YWT: The Philadelphia Flyers Podcast - YWT #139 - Who Holds The Keys?

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The YWT Podcast is back and the Flyers have finally won a game! They made some more history along the way, reaching a franchise-record 13 straight losses before snapping the losing streak with a win on Saturday against the Kings. There was also a press conference during the week with Dave Scott and Chuck Fletcher that provides much of the talking points.

The guys discuss the recent losses and the win that snapped the streak and recap the press conference and what was said and reaction to it all. Join Kyle Collington and Kevin Durso for another episode.

You can listen to this episode of the podcast below and be sure to subscribe on iTunes, Google Play, Spotify, Amazon Podcasts and Podbean

You can also watch the episode and subscribe to watch all episodes of the YWT Podcast on YouTube.

As always, we want you to follow the podcast on Twitter @YWTpodcast and follow Kevin Durso on Twitter @Kevin_Durso.


Phillies: World Series Ifs for 2022

 

By Tal Venada, Sports Talk Philly Contributor

While some Philadelphia Phillies fans focused on part of the 2021 Fall Classic, they either ignored or didn't consider the obstacles a hot team overcomes to win it all. In doing so, negative emotions blinded some locals to those unmentioned factors. An open wound, no?

 

Selective Logic:

If you only view half a picture, would the other 50 percent give you the opportunity to rethink your belief? Well, it depends on how open-minded you are because being wrong can sting. Me: I’d rather have the insight coming from information unclouded by the emotional crutch of instant assumption.  

IN OTHER WORDS:

“When I would go to the barrio, people saw me as a rich person, but when I'm around rich people, they see me as someone from the ghetto. It's all perceptions.” - J Balvin

For the Phillies faithful, September hasn’t been a pleasant month, and last October was even worse because of their rival’s unforeseen celebration. Yes, the more impossible the outcome is; the harder the mind can make sense of it. But time and a fresh start can rehabilitate the Philadelphia fan base.   

If a dominant rotation was the biggest requirement for the World Series trophy, the 2011 Phillies with four aces plus a dynamic offense qualified and had the franchise record of 102 triumphs. But the St. Louis Cardinals were the hot club beginning with the National League Wild Card, and they won the championship.

Continue reading "Phillies: World Series Ifs for 2022" »


3 Observations From Sixers' Comeback Victory Over Kings

By Matt Gregan, Sports Talk Philly Staff Writer

The Philadelphia 76ers escaped Saturday's matchup with the Sacramento Kings at the Wells Fargo Center with a 103-101 victory. The win extended the Sixers' winning streak to four games. They have won 15 of their last 19 games.

Joel Embiid finished the game with 36 points on 10-of-18 shooting, including knocking down 14 of his 18 attempts from the line, to go with 12 rebounds and six assists. It was his 17th straight game with 25 or more points.

Seth Curry looked a bit slow in his return from a four-game absence due to left ankle soreness, scoring eight points on 3-of-10 shooting along with five assists. Shake Milton continued to be sidelined with a back contusion he suffered on Jan. 3.

The Kings, without De'Aaron Fox, put up an unexpectedly good fight against the Sixers. They held the lead for most of the game before the Sixers stormed back in the fourth quarter to win the game. Tyrese Haliburton, perhaps auditioning for a trade, nearly willed the Kings into an upset victory, finishing with an incredible 38 points, seven assists and three steals.

Here are some observations from the team's victory on Saturday:

Embiid dominates in the second half

Embiid might have finished the game with 36 points, but it was not an even night for the MVP contender. The Sixers struggled to get much going in the first half, falling behind the Kings 61-50 at halftime. Embiid, at that point, had only 12 points on 1-of-5 shooting, but he was 10-of-12 from the line. Philadelphia committed 13 turnovers and the Kings were doing an excellent job sending quick double teams to Embiid every time he touched the ball.

Continue reading "3 Observations From Sixers' Comeback Victory Over Kings" »


Laughton's OT Goal Ends Flyers Losing Streak

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

It felt like it was happening again. The Flyers had a 3-1 lead in the third period of Saturday afternoon's game, only to watch it disappear with just 37 seconds separating them from their first win of 2022. 

But in overtime, the Flyers finally got the break they needed to put an end to the losing streak. A rebound goal by Scott Laughton was the difference, giving the Flyers a 4-3 victory over the Los Angeles Kings at Wells Fargo Center to snap a 13-game losing streak. 

Continue reading "Laughton's OT Goal Ends Flyers Losing Streak" »


Flyers-Kings: Game 44 Preview

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

Following a 13th straight loss on Tuesday, the Flyers schedule has lightened significantly. They will face the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday afternoon. Following this game, the Flyers will play just three times in the next two weeks.

That makes the current losing streak even more of a challenge to break. With each loss that occurs, there will be several days in between games for it to continue to be the dark cloud hanging over the franchise. The Flyers try to avoid a 14th straight defeat and a winless month of January against the same team that they opened the month again, the Kings.

Game time is 1 p.m.

Continue reading "Flyers-Kings: Game 44 Preview" »


Should The Sixers Trade Tyrese Maxey?

The Philadelphia 76ers continue to deal with the Ben Simmons drama to the best of their ability but have been getting no help from Simmons and his team. With ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reporting that the Sacramento Kings are no longer interested in the Simmons sweepstakes, that leaves one trade favorite, the Brooklyn Nets. After it was reported last week that superstar guard James Harden was frustrated and open to playing elsewhere, the Sixers have been connected and apparently have offered a rising star for Harden.

Rumors have been swirling all week, with the anticipated trade deadline creeping up quickly, and the Sixers have been involved in multiple. The most popular rumor came out on Friday afternoon,  that the Sixers have offered Simmons and young star Tyrese Maxey for Harden. The Sixers have been on fire lately, winning 13 of their last 16 games, and playing their best ball of the season. Obviously, that has a lot to do with the amazing play of Joel Embiid, who has scored 25+ points in 16 straight games and was just announced as an All-Star starter for the fifth straight season. Embiid has had help though, mainly from Maxey and Tobias Harris. 

Maxey has taken a big leap so far in his second season. His season averages are now up to 16.5 points, 4.6 assists and 3.5 rebounds per game on 46.3% shooting per contest. A big step up from his numbers last year, especially in scoring now that he is the second option with Simmons out of the rotation.  Trading the young star would almost guarantee the Sixers a top, superstar player back, which is what they are looking for, but giving up the 21 year old Maxey may be too high of an asking price.

Maxey, 21, has emerged as a solid second option in the Sixers offense and will only continue to improve as he gets more NBA experience and has formed great chemistry with Embiid. Harden, who will be 33 this August, is on a bit of a decline. Even on a decline though, Harden is still averaging 23 points, 8.1 rebounds and 10.1 assists on 42% shooting, his lowest mark since his rookie year. A pick and roll offense with Embiid and Harden would immediately be a top duo in the league and would turn the Sixers into immediate championship contenders but keeping Maxey and allowing him to develop into the second option for Embiid could attract talent to come to Philadelphia through free agency and they could still make a run at Harden this summer. 

The possibilities are endless for the trade deadline and the rumors will continue to swirl even after the deadline. As long as Simmons stays on the Sixers, there will be trade rumors following. Making a run at Harden seems to be the team's favorite option and could happen this offseason when, hopefully, they have more leverage to trade Simmons but until anything happens, anything seems possible. 

SixerBell


Report: Kings 'End Pursuit' of Ben Simmons Trade

By Matt Gregan, Sports Talk Philly Staff Writer

The Sacramento Kings were rumored over the past few weeks to be the front runners in the Ben Simmons trade market. After the latest bombshell report by ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, that no longer appears to be the case.

"The Sacramento Kings -- one of the most aggressive teams in the trade market and once an eager suitor for Philadelphia's Ben Simmons -- have ended their pursuit of a deal with the 76ers and turned elsewhere in trade talks, sources told ESPN on Friday.

Inside of two weeks until the Feb. 10 NBA trade deadline, the Kings believe the asking price for Simmons is too steep and that a pathway to a trade agreement with the Sixers doesn't exist, sources said," Wojnarowski reported.

The potential return from the Kings would have provided the best combination of win-now players and long-term assets. Now that the Kings have dropped out of the Simmons trade talks, the chances of Simmons remaining a member of the Philadelphia 76ers past the Feb. 10 trade deadline just shot way up.

Continue reading "Report: Kings 'End Pursuit' of Ben Simmons Trade" »


Union Sign Danish Superstar Mikael Uhre

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By Siobhan Nolan, Contributing Writer

The Union announced on Jan. 27 that they have signed Danish forward Mikael Uhre to a three-year Designated Player contract, with an option for a fourth year, in exchange for unknown transfer fee.

Uhre, who transferred to Philadelphia from Brøndby IF, was the Golden Boot winner in the Danish Superliga, and will be added to the Union’s active roster following the acquisition of his International Transfer Certificate and P1 Visa. Last season, he scored 21 goals and six assists in 34 appearances, all of which were starts. In addition to his Golden Boot, Uhre was named Danish Superliga Player of the Season. So far this season, he as 14 goals in 26 appearances (24 starts). His 11 goals in 16 league games currently lead the entire league.

The 27-year-old is also capped for the Danish national team, having received his first senior-call up in November of last year. He made his full debut in a 2-0 loss against Scotland.

Union sporting director Ernst Tanner said of Uhre’s transfer, “We have been following Mikael for some time as he has developed and risen through the Danish Superliga, and we are excited to complete this deal to bring him to the Union. We are always looking for ways to improve the quality of our roster and we believe Mikael, having become a top player in Denmark, is a good fit for our system and will be an integral piece in our continued growth as a club. We are looking forward to welcoming him as we build on the success of last year and turn our attention to the 2022 season.”