COMMENTARY | It's no trick. Every NBA fan is talking about the treat the Philadelphia 76ers gave their crowd on opening night.
The team is the buzz of the NBA right now and it's for a good reason, not what the team has experienced since last season ended.
On October 30, 2013, the Philadelphia 76ers -- the favorite to have the worst record this season -- defeated the Miami Heat -- the favorite to win the NBA championship, what would be their third consecutive title -- 114-110.
Sure, the 76ers were home and the Heat were playing for the second-consecutive night. Also, Heat All-Star guard Dwyane Wade sat out for precautionary reasons. Still, a win is a win, and no one predicted the 76ers would get their first this early in the season.
What was even more surprising than the victory? Philadelphia opened up the game with a 19-0 run.
Michael Carter-Williams is, deservedly so, getting the headlines for his performance in the game. He scored 22 points, dished out 12 assists, grabbed seven rebounds and got nine steals -- an NBA record for a player in his first game.
The biggest buzz around the game, however, came from free-agent-to-be Evan Turner.
Off a missed Heat layup, you can see Turner break out down the court. Spencer Hawes taps the ball out to Thaddeus Young, who looks up and sees Turner down the court. Collecting the ball a bit in front of three-point line, Turner doesn't hesitate. He takes it right to the basket, gets over a leaping James, and slams it home.
That one play, that one moment, was essentially the game in a nutshell. James got in the way, much like the Heat did by coming back from being down by 19 points early, but Turner and Philadelphia finished with authority.
James has a history of throwing dunks down in front of helpless defenders. Wednesday, Turner returned the favor. Nobody saw it coming, much like the 76ers winning that game, but the people can't stop talking about it.
Phil Shore lives in New Jersey and is the creator and editor of Shore Thing Sports blog. He's been published in The Boston Globe, Philly.com, FoxSoccer.com, LaxMagazine.com and New England Lacrosse Journal.
- Sports & Recreation
- Philadelphia 76ers
- Miami Heat
- LeBron James
- Evan Turner