Through no fault of his own, Andre Iguodala and his hefty contract seem to be getting in the way of the Sixers’ best interest.The $80 million man has many good traits: he’s a terrific defender, rebounds well for his size, is one of the game’s most athletic players, and he plays hard every night. Not listed among those attributes, you’ll notice, is scoring.
The Sixers are well aware of that lone deficiency. Coach Doug Collins repeatedly has said he doesn’t have anyone on the team that can score at will.
That suggestion fosters unselfish play for most of the game, but creates a big problem during the dying minutes of a close game. The team full of non-scorers doesn’t know where to look when it needs a bucket. By default, they turn to the franchise player, Andre Iguodala.
That rarely turns breeds success, as Sixers’ beat writer Kate Fagan describes in dizzying detail. Rather than continue to swing the ball for the best opportunity, the Sixers’ rely exclusively on their non-scorer to get a bucket when its needed most. And he responds with a forced attempt, time and time again.
There’s no doubt that Iguodala is a very good player, and he’s probably even worth the hefty contract. However, the “franchise player” moniker inevitably comes with that money, and Iguodala simply isn’t worthy of that regard.
He’s an excellent second-banana, and would be the second coming of Pippen next to someone else’s Jordan. But as long as he’s wearing the Jordan hat, the Sixers – who are already much better than their 12-18 record suggests – will continue to underachieve.
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