This weekend got of to a nice start with the Final Four tipping off in New Orleans as Kentucky did what most of us expected but Louisville went down swinging. While in the second National Semifinal Kansas would come back against Ohio State giving us a matchup against to of college basketball’s bluebloods tonight. Will Naismith and Wooden Award winnner Anthony Davis pull of an unprecedented freshman triple-crown?
Plus: Elton Brand comes up big and Donovan McNabb rips Mike Shanahan and Tim Tebow.
After suffering their worst loss of the season Friday night against the Washington Wizards the Philadelphia 76’ers not only lost the Atlantic Division lead, they were facing a hot Atlanta Hawks team the next night in a possible first-round playoff matchup.
Despite holding a 2-0 season series lead, the Sixers looked like they were still suffering the ill-effects of whatever plagued them in DC the night before. Sloppy play and poor execution had the home team trailing by as many as nine points but the Hawks allowed the 76’ers to hang around as they would trail by only four heading into the final quarter.
Then Elton Brand happened.
In his fourth season in Philadelphia Brand may have had his best game in a Sixer uniform – always the model for leadership on such a young squad Brand scored 13 of his team-high 25 points (10 rebounds, 5 assists and 3 blocked shots) in a fourth quarter that saw the Sixers outscore the Hawks 33-24 enabling the Sixers to steal a 95-90 victory in front 19,700 fans on a chilly Saturday night. The Sixers got excellent production from their starter as only center Spencer Hawes (8 points, 8 rebounds) and Jrue Holiday (9 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists) missed scoring in double figures. Andre Iguodala (19 points, 8 rebounds) and Evan Turner ( 13 points, 4 rebounds) rounded out the scoring for the starters. Jodie Meeks provided 12 points off the bench.
Josh Smith had an outstanding game for the Hawks, finishing with 34 points, 9 rebounds and 5 assists before fouling out.
Friday on ESPN’s ‘First Take’ Donovan McNabb took time out to rip into Tim Tebow as well as his former head coach Mike Shanahan stating that Heisman Trophy winner Robert Griffin III would not be successful if he were drafted by the Washington Redksins in this month’s draft. In regards to Tebow, McNabb wishes that the signalcaller would kill the sis-boom-bah and get down to improving as a quarterback:
“Let it go. At some point let’s focus on getting into camp and learning a new offense. There’s no need to keep trying to have the fans behind you. Every time that we look up there’s something. He’s reaching out to fans, telling them ‘I love you, I’m working hard.’ As an NFL player, and as a veteran in this game, no one cares what you’re doing during the off-season…They only care about what you do on the football field. This is why a lot of people in the Denver Broncos locker room had an issue (with Tebow).”
McNabb for all of his professional career has been labeled as one of the NFL’s class acts despite constant criticism from all directions since the day he was drafted. Now all of the sudden he is now being labeled as having sour grapes and bitterness because things have been less than stellar for him since being traded from the Philadelphia Eagles nearly two years ago with less than memorable stints in Washington and Minnesota.