76ers Firing Brett Brown, But How About Elton Brand?
The Philadelphia 76ers were blown out by the Boston Celtics 128-101 on Wednesday. They are now down 0-2 and will almost certainly not escape the first round of the Eastern Conference Playoffs.
Brown, much as he has been on many occasions over the past few years, looked completely lost throughout Game 2. He had no idea how to stop Jayson Tatum defensively. He had no clue on how to get his guys going offensively.
At one point, when it became clear that his players had seemingly quit on him, it just became sad to watch.
After the outing, Brown acknowledged that his group’s effort was lacking.
“I think the effort wasn’t at a level that it needed to be during the meat part of the game,” he admitted.
Joel Embiid also conceded that his team got deflated.
“It’s hard when you play good defense, and the opponent just keeps hitting tough shots,” he said. “But it should never affect us. You need to keep playing the same defense, be aggressive, just try to get stops. Sometimes, the offense is better than defense, so you’ve just got to keep on going.”
But Philly didn’t keep on going. The team hung their heads when the going got hard. And someone will need to pay the price for that.
— Lucci (@LucciSportsGuy) August 20, 2020
Brown will be fired next week once Philly is officially eliminated by the Celtics. That much is clear. His underperformance with the stable of All-Stars he has been handed over the past few years speaks for itself. He needs to go.
But what about Elton Brand?
76ers Need To Get Rid Of Brand, Too
Brand was given the keys to one of the most intriguing franchises in the Eastern Conference.
What has he done since then?
He gave away skilled role players to acquire Jimmy Butler, only to lose him to free agency. (Butler has since transformed the Miami Heat into one of the Eastern Conference’s scariest squads.)
He put together a mismatched roster that has $150 million on the books for next season.
He gave Tobias Harris and 34-year-old Al Horford a combined $289 million in contracts during the offseason. The pair scored a total of 17 points on Wednesday.
When Elton Brand uses all the cap space on Tobias Harris and Al Horford pic.twitter.com/3RrvvUy7Pv
— Stephen A. Smith Burner (@SASBurnerAcct) August 20, 2020
Philly is further away from figuring out how to play Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid together than ever before, and they have virtually no way of meaningfully improving the players around them.
Brand has to answer for that.
Next week, Brown will be fired. There is no question about that. But he shouldn’t be sitting alone in that Uber out of town. Brand should be right beside him. Both men messed up a championship contender, and both men should have to answer for it.