Philadelphia 76ers’ Secret Weapon: Joey Chestnut

The ORLANDO SENTINEL is downright giddy about the suddenly buoyant fortunes of the Magic. So Brian Schmitz reported, probably with a chuckle, that the club was kicked out of Philadelphia’s Wachovia Center for its morning shootaround yesterday - before Orlando took on the Sixers later that evening.

Joey Chestnut Wing Bowl Wingettes

(Joey and the “Wingettes)

Schmitz: “They were unable to hold their usual morning shoot-around at Wachovia Center because of ‘The Wing Bowl,’ the annual chicken wing-eating contest scheduled for the Friday before the Super Bowl. Doors opened at 6 a.m. and the eating began at 7:55 a.m.

‘We didn’t get in on the wing thing,’ laughed Magic Coach Stan Van Gundy.

The Magic ended up having the shootaround at something called the Community College of Philadelphia. Despite the change in address, Orlando continued its season-long uprising with a 108-106 win over Philly later that night.

If the Magic were having their usually awful season (those days are over with Dwight Howard), we don’t know how funny Van Gundy would’ve thought the circumstances were.

More importantly, the wing eating contest won by Joey Chestnut, who inhaled 241 wings. The event was attended by an estimated 20,000(!) at Wachovia Center.

You probably could’ve doubled that number if it was a mash potato-eating affair (inside Philly josh).