It was a small and quick piece of advice that Elton Brand gave Thaddeus Young during Friday night's loss to Miami. But, it was significant.
Seeing that the Heat had ancient forward Juwan Howard matched up against Young after a timeout, Brand told Young to get the ball and go to the basket. About 7 seconds into the possession, Young did just that and scored two points to trim the Miami lead to five points. Brand nodded approvingly as the two made their way down the court, and so did Sixers coach Doug Collins on the bench.
It was just two points in what turned out to be a nine-point loss, but it was a play with far bigger meaning. Collins has talked endlessly since the beginning of the season about how his team needs to communicate more, and be able to adjust on the fly. Too many of his players are introverted on the court. Though they may see something, they often wait for their coach to make an adjustment, instead of doing it themselves. Brand's interaction with Young was one of the few times that has happened this season - at least with immediate success.