For what it’s worth, I don’t think these teams were trying to lose. I don’t think the missed free throws, the ugly offense, the sub-40 percent shooting on both sides were intentional, on either side.
I don’t think a team intentionally sets the franchise record for most losses in a month.
I think Jared Sullinger’s help defense nearly made Evan Turner miss his layup attempt. I think Turner crossed over Bayless badly, and he made a tough, hanging shot — a contested shot, incidentally, that he missed just a few possessions before. I think Jared Sullinger scoring 24 points and pulling down 17 rebounds is extremely impressive, given his injured finger, and not the actions of a player who has surrendered to tanking. I think the Sixers racing up and down the floor with no regard for their lungs or their exhaustion is something only a team trying to win would do. I think Jeff Green attacking the basket, however ineffectually, shows that he doesn’t want to lose. He wants to win.
I also think that Danny Ainge has set this team up to fail, and fail hard. He may have even done a good enough job to make them worse than Philadelphia, not intentionally, but simply because the players on Philadelphia’s roster are somehow better than the players on Boston’s roster.
But that’s just what I think, and frankly, I don’t really want to think about it anymore.
Brian will be by for more later.
Follow Tom on Twitter: @Tom_NBA.