Today at Sixers practice Head Coach Eddie Jordan made some changes that were certainly noticeable. Elton Brand was working with the 2nd team, while Rodney Carney and Jason Smith were both practicing with the 1st team.
Of course this raised some questions from the media, for both Brand and Jordan.
The answers received were interesting to say the least. Let’s just say there is definitely some reading between the lines necessary to know exactly whats going on.
Jordan wasn’t very forthright when answering whether or not there would be a change to the starting line-up. Brand was a little more open, stating that Jordan had told him he’d be working more with the 2’s instead of with the more up-tempo 1’s.
Now, as I mentioned earlier both Jason Smith and Rodney Carney saw time with the 1’s during practice. Clearly the line-up of Williams, Iguodala, Young, Carney and Smith was the most successful so far this season. With Willie Green and Jrue Holiday coming off the bench it’s not a bad little rotation.
Jordan seems to be “cutting the fat,” seemingly benching Brand and Dalembert during crucial parts of games. The writing has been on the wall for a while now, and this latest development just adds to the suspicions that we’ve all had.
Dalembert and Brand being on this team certainly puts the stranglehold on the Sixers cap. As I stated earlier last week there is no easy answer to this problem. Trading either of them is nearly impossible, letting them sit is an option but it’s hard to sell that to a Sixers brass that shelled out the money for both. Giving them roles off the bench could be the best compromise, for now.
Dalembert is owed more than 11 Million this season, and a little over 12 Million next season. No team is going to take on that contract and few teams could. In short, the Sixers may be stuck with Dalembert.
With Brand your also most likely stuck with him this season, if things continue to go badly a buy-out could be an option. Whether or not Brand would agree to a buy-out is uncertain. He would obviously clear waivers, which is the required first step, after that the team and player can agree on a buyout amount, similar to the Chris Webber situation. However, teams have until January 10th to do so or the player is owed his entire salary for the remainder of that season.
All of this talk may be jumping the gun but it’s a situation the Sixers can no longer ignore. Something has to be done and quickly. This team may have a new head coach and new(old) uniforms, but they still have the same problems.
About the Author
Written by Mike Santa Barbara
Sports writer covering mostly Philadelphia sports for over 10 years. Work has been featured on RealGM.com, GCobb.com and Comcast Sportsnet Philadelphia (CSNPhilly.com.)