MIAMI, FLORIDA - MAY 10: Joel Embiid #21 of the Philadelphia 76ers reacts after being injured against the Miami Heat during the first half in Game Five of the Eastern Conference Semifinals at FTX Arena on May 10, 2022 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
By Bob Cooney
The Philadelphia 76ers sucked last night.
And they put out as much effort last night against the Miami Heat as I did writing that opening line.
Inexcusable. Horrible. Listless. Ill-prepared. All were used by various people when trying to describe what happened down in Florida last night and they are all appropriate.
But there was one word I heard to describe last night’s effort – and I use that word loosely – that caught my attention more than any other and that was “expected.”
Texting with a coach last night that was the word he used. Expected. He expected that the Sixers would come out and play the way they did last night. He said he’s seen it so many times in the past few years that he didn’t understand how people who follow this team didn’t see this abysmal showing coming.
I stated yesterday that I still don’t know who this team is. That shouldn’t shock anyone. Assuming I know anything is still a hard admit for me. But, like coaches, teams have personalities. And with personalities, you usually know the highs and the lows that accompany it.
Not with this team. Rather. Not with this organization.
We all know about the lack of success in the playoffs for the past four years. Frustrating is too soft a word to describe those forays. The biggest game of the regular season may have been when Brooklyn and Ben Simmons came to town for a much anticipated showdown. That turned into a 29-point loss.
Rare are the times, when needed, this team, this organization, rises to meeting a formidable challenge and last night was the latest example. Where does the blame go? EVERYWHERE. From ownership to front office to coaching to players. The goal of the Process was to be in contention for championships for many years. Depending on your definition of contending, they may be there. But another goal was to build a winning culture.  In that area, so far, this organization has failed so far. Because not only are fans “expecting” poor efforts in big moments, you wonder if the organization is also.