Hawes a go
After playing a little less than 19 minutes in Saturday's blowout of the Toronto Raptors because of a strained back, center Spencer Hawes was back last night after a maintenance day on Sunday.
Hawes tweaked his back early in the Toronto game, and the pain just kept getting worse. Precaution and a blowout led to the Collins' decision to shut down his starting big man.
Hawes deemed himself fit yesterday morning.
"Feeling a lot better. Got a chance to do some treatment [Sunday] - massage, yoga - ran through the whole gamut, so I'm feeling better," Hawes said. "It was just one of those things where I started feeling it and you keep going on with the game, and it starts to feel worse and worse. It's a long season and it can come up on you quickly. Thankfully, we were in a game where I could come out and get a little more rest coming into this stretch that we have this week."
"I think it's good that we got him out of the game the other night where he didn't hurt it any more. He got a lot of good therapy on it after the game and [Sunday]," Collins said.
Hawes started and played his normal rotation, though he did sit a good portion of the first half after picking up his second foul in the middle of the second quarter.
Last night, the Indiana Pacers were without leading scorer Danny Granger, as he was felled by a bout with food poisoning. It continued a strange trend of opponents missing games against the Sixers.
The Utah Jazz were without starting forward Al Jefferson when it was announced just before game time that he had sprained an ankle. Golden State's high-scoring guard Monta Ellis was unavailable the next night while attending his grandmother's funeral. In New Orleans a couple of days later, Hornets starting forward Trevor Ariza was sidelined with a groin injury. Two nights after that, the Detroit Pistons were shorthanded when two starters were out, as Ben Gordon attended to a personal matter and Rodney Stuckey was sidelined with a strained groin.
Then last night the Granger announcement came just before the game.
In a season that is compressing 66 dames into 123 days, strange things are sure to happen. This could be the first of many examples.
A quick survey of about eight Sixers players before the game revealed that all of them thought Alabama would beat LSU last night in the BCS Championship Game. Many acknowledged that they planned to record the game and watch it later.