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News » Jordan blasts 76ers after loss to Grizzlies

Jordan blasts 76ers after loss to Grizzlies

Jordan blasts 76ers after loss to Grizzlies In front of their largest home crowd of the season, the 76ers lost to the Memphis Grizzlies last night, 102-97, which was a little like tripping while walking across a stage.

The Grizzlies, still without a victory against a winning team, did it the way many of the Sixers' opponents this season had done it: by dominating the lane and snagging more rebounds - many more rebounds.

The Sixers dropped to 5-7. Memphis improved to 4-8.

Only minutes after the game, Sixers coach Eddie Jordan walked to the news-conference podium. His words, without provocation, were scalding.

"There were two different teams out there tonight," Jordan said. "One sort of rallied around each other, and the other fragmented. That's just being honest, like I like to be. I'm not going to sugarcoat it. We had five individuals on the floor. We didn't rally around each other. We should have won this game."

Jordan said "no leadership" existed.

He delivered a similar message to his team.

"He said something like that when he came in here," starting forward Thaddeus Young said. "That doesn't do anything when a coach is telling you stuff like that. That doesn't do anything but make us go back to the drawing board."

"It's not about talking," said Sixers swingman Andre Iguodala, who finished 5 of 16 for 15 points. "It's about going out there and playing."

Through 12 games, the Sixers haven't done that.

If rebounding wins championships, the Sixers were boxed out of contention last night at the Wachovia Center. Memphis outrebounded them, 48-28.

"It's an old saying: 'If you don't bite as puppies, you're not going to bite as dogs,' " Jordan said. "And if you didn't rebound as a young man or teenager, you aren't going to rebound when it's time to be a man. We just don't have those type of guys right now."

After getting outrebounded by double digits only four times last season, last night marked this season's third occurrence.

The Grizzlies' starting frontcourt trio of Rudy Gay, Zach Randolph, and Marc Gasol combined for 73 points and 29 rebounds. Gay scored a game high of 33 points.

When reserve big man Marreese Speights went down with a knee injury, sidelining him for up to two months, Jordan said the team would fill the gap with defense.

But last night it was Memphis filling gaps - with slashes to the rim and dives to the hoop. The Sixers' defensive rotations, unlike a good-looking shot, had no follow-through. On many occasions, the Grizzlies drove the baseline, drew the middle help, then dished the ball under the basket for a quick bucket. After the initial rotation, no secondary existed.

"That's been our biggest problem," Iguodala said. "We don't play together on the defensive end."

Last night, the announced crowd of 14,269 - 3,000 more than the team's average - saw something a Wachovia Center crowd hadn't seen since 2003:

A Memphis Grizzlies victory.

Contact staff writer Kate Fagan at 856-779-3844 or kfagan@phillynews.com.

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Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website: http://www.foxsports.com
Added: November 21, 2009


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