By now his comments have been played throughout not only Philadelphia but around the country. Instead of a fuming coach, Collins projected the image of a disappointed parent.
He understands talent as much as anybody and knows the Sixers aren't overflowing in that department. But in Collins' mind, effort should never be given a night off.
And in this instance, his team let him down.
The Sixers (22-33) have lost six in a row. Since the all-star break they are 0-4 and have been outscored by 51 points, causing Collins to make this admission.
"I didn't think our guys prepared themselves during the break to come back to play," he said.
The only player he praised was Damien Wilkins, who scored 14 points.
Forward Thaddeus Young, playing just his second game since missing six with a hamstring injury, agreed with Collins' assessment.
"This game is based on energy, and we didn't have energy," Young, who had eight points and 10 rebounds, said of Tuesday's loss.
So now the Sixers come to a critical part of the season and perhaps a crossroads for the franchise. Does this young team bounce back and show some fight? It's the same fight shown by a young Magic team that on Tuesday played with unbridled enthusiasm, especially former Sixer Nik Vucevic, who had 12 points and 19 rebounds.
It wasn't lost on Collins that the Sixers centers, Hawes and Lavoy Allen, combined for five rebounds.
The Sixers will be on national TV, with Thursday's game from the United Center against the Chicago Bulls being carried on TNT.
The only positive angle is that Tuesday's game wasn't shown nationwide.
"It's basketball," guard Evan Turner said, "and you keep trying to fight and keep working."
Contact Marc Narducci at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow on Twitter @sjnard.