The Sixers lost at home on Saturday to a Mavericks team playing without Dirk Nowitzki, who was given the night off simply to rest.
The difference, of course, is that even without Dirk, the Dallas roster is full of recognizable NBA talent, guys who have already gained many valuable years of professional basketball experience.
Philadelphia, meanwhile, is essentially starting from scratch, going with young players exclusively as part of a multi-year rebuilding process, the results of which have been disastrous in terms of wins and losses this season.
The Sixers fell to 0-16, and in doing so, set a franchise record for consecutive losses to begin a season. But if there’s some good news to come out of any of this, it’s that head coach Brett Brown and the players are managing to stay positive.
From Dei Lynam of CSN Philly:
“It isn’t hard,” Brett Brown said when asked what it is like to coach a team that surpasses such a record set in 1972-73. “I asked my guys [Friday], ‘Tell me the team that had the longest losing streak to start the season.’ One of them knew. I said, ‘Tell me the names of three players on the team.’ Nobody knew. I said, ‘Who was the general manager?’ Nobody answered. I said, ‘Tell me who the owners were.’ Nobody knew. I asked who the coach was, and they all knew.” …
“We are heartbroken; you can’t dismiss that. I feel terrible. I feel for the city because we want to get it right. But down deep I know something is going on that I like. I think they will be rewarded for their efforts and validated for the work they put in.”
Philadelphia does have some promising young pieces. Michael Carter-Williams put up a triple-double in the loss, K.J. McDaniels has been electrifying off the bench, and Tony Wroten (the team’s leading scorer, who was out Saturday due to injury) possesses a skill set that has all kinds of room for improvement as he gets more games under his belt.
But winning still might be a long way off. Next up for Philadelphia: a home date on Monday against the defending champion Spurs.