76ers fans are mad about a lot of things this game including:
-Joel Embiid’s turnovers
-Joel Embiid’s body language
-Ben Simmons’s turnovers
-Ben Simmons not shooting threes
-Brett Brown’s offense
-Turnovers by Joel Embiid
That’s not a truly comprehensive list (I thought I saw a Twitter post stating how much they hated Raul Neto but that could’ve been a Russian bot), but one thing that’s conspicuously missing? Them being mad that they got rid of Ish Smith all those years ago and now he’s back to kick their booty.
Smith’s final 50-game stint with Philly was peak Smith. He averaged 15 and 7 for them and I think they won less than 10 games the whole time he was there. He was the best tank-commander ever, in my opinion, just good enough to help make the offense somewhat acceptable (thus helping all the young players develop) but not good enough to add many wins. I sincerely hope that 76ers fans have fond memories of him when they look back on the darkest days of “The Process”.
Smith is filling a similar role for the ‘Zards, except that he has to be the backup behind Isaiah Thomas whose tank-commanding credentials may not be as good, but has the potential to be one of the best tank-commanders ever. Smith is way more of a passer, less chucky (though he does like those midrange jimbos), and barely tall enough to not be as much of a disaster on defense as Thomas. But when one of them goes down, the ‘Zards tank doesn’t need to be disabled along with them.