Sixers Notes: Turnovers, bad shots make Sixers' job harder

(Chris Szagola/AP)
(Chris Szagola/AP)
Posted: February 11, 2014

LOS ANGELES - Brett Brown's much-talked-about commitment to improved defense has been hindered by the 76ers' propensity for turnovers and bad shots.

"It exacerbates a defensive problem in transition defense," the coach said after Sunday morning's shootaround for a game against the Los Angeles Clippers at the Staples Center. "And when you really cut to the chase and say we've really got to play better transition defense, [you] identify where are we really getting hurt."

The Sixers hit the road for three games - against the Clippers, the Golden State Warriors, and the Utah Jazz - before the all-star break, and their goal is to limit bad shots and turnovers.

Heading into Sunday night's game, the Sixers averaged 17.2 turnovers and had their shots blocked an average of 7.4 times a game. They ranked a distant last in the NBA in both categories.

Brown's team was also last in scoring defense (110.0 points a game), opponents' assists (26.6), and three-pointers surrendered (9.5).

"Everybody gets tired of me talking about the defensive problems that we have," Brown said. "At times when you dig a little deeper, you've got [point guards] Michael [Carter-Williams] and Tony [Wroten] driving at the rim. They get their shot blocked, and off they go."

The same thing happens with quick shots. The Sixers throw up ill-advised shots early in the shot clock. The opposing team grabs the rebound and starts a fastbreak.

"It gets deflating, and people aren't even in position," Brown said. "[Opponents] are not expecting somebody to shoot."

A homecoming

Sunday's game marked this season's second homecoming for Sixers rookie Hollis Thompson. The 6-foot-8 swingman was born in Pasadena, Calif., and attended Loyola High School in Los Angeles.

He said he grew up rooting for the Clippers and the Lakers.

"Clippers games were a little easier to get [tickets] to," Thompson said. "So I've been to more Clippers games. But I was a big Lakers fan, too."

The Sixers defeated the Lakers, 111-104, at the Staples Center on Dec. 29.

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