The Philadelphia 76ers are mediocre, with a dollop of turmoil.
Former head coach Maurice Cheeks, one of the franchise's all-time greats, got the bum's rush back in December. Their marquee name, Elton Brand, is out for the rest of the season with a bad wing. Their top active player is shooting guard Andre Iguodala, who shoots sub-50 percent from two-point range, under 30 percent from three. The rest of their lineup is fleshed out by the unintimidating likes of Samuel Dalembert, Thaddeus Young, and Andre Miller.
If recent history's a guide, the Suns will make Iguodala look like Dr. J and these so-so Sixers look like the '95-96 Chicago Bulls when Phoenix visits Philly's Wachovia Center on Monday, February 9. Transforming lumps of NBA coal into diamonds is a Suns specialty this year, and it won't help that the Philly game is the hind end of a road back-to-back.
Buck up, Suns fans. It gets worse. After Philly, Phoenix faces LeBron James and the Cavaliers on Wednesday in Cleveland, where the Cavs are...23-1. When it rains, it sleets.
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The Philly game tips at 5 p.m. See www.nba.com/suns. TV: NBA TV, My45 (cable 9). Radio: KTAR-AM 620.