March 24, 2014 | AT&T Center, San Antonio, Texas
Posted: March 24, 2014
SAN ANTONIO –– It’s a point that Sixers head coach Brett Brown has reiterated throughout this season: his team is on a different path than most in the NBA.
Featuring the youngest roster in the league, Philadelphia is in the beginning stages of instilling a culture and a style of play that Brown believes will lead the franchise to sustained success in the future.
His former team, the Spurs, on the other hand, have been there for the better part of two decades.
Facing an experienced San Antonio team, the Sixers kept pace early on, knotting the game up at 19 apiece with 3:45 left in the first quarter. Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich, now in his eighteenth season at the helm of a team that hasn’t had a losing season since 1996-97, called a timeout to regroup. In the ensuing eight minutes, San Antonio broke off a 26-5 run, pushing their lead to 21. Popovich’s Spurs never allowed their lead to drop into single digits, coasting to a 113-91 win at home.
“That’s how you play the game,” Brown said of San Antonio’s precise and efficient offensive attack. “What you see is a system that is born out of many, many years of corporate knowledge. The blinks, and the winks, and subtle nuances – they understand each other’s tendencies, and the offense shines. It’s not just a product of talented players or a good coach, it’s a decade’s worth of corporate knowledge.”
Brown, in his first season as an NBA head coach, mans a roster that is younger than any in the league (23.6 years, on average). Thaddeus Young was the only player to on the floor for the Sixers Monday night who was with the team last season, and of the 10 Philadelphia players who logged minutes in the game, only five were with the team one month ago.
For the Spurs, it was their 14th consecutive victory, the longest winning streak in the NBA this season. For the Sixers, it was their 25th straight loss, one away from matching a league record.
Carter-Williams finished with 17 points, seven rebounds, and four assists. Thaddeus Young had 17 points and five rebounds, Henry Sims contributed 10 points, seven rebounds, and seven assists, and Byron Mullens came off the bench to score 15 points and pull down eight rebounds.
The Sixers return to action Thursday night at 8pm (EST) against the Rockets in Houston.