Last year, the Sixers were the worst team in the NBA. Every now and then, they showed some surprise magic, but by and large, they were hopeless. Sometimes they were even unwatchable.
This year has not brought a seismic change.. But the team is morphing into something different. Beating the Nets today, they have now equaled their win total from last year – 10 games. And this is without their first round number 1 draft pick, Ben Simmons. Simmons should rejoin the team sometime this month.
There are several reasons for this. Embiid, Embiid, and Embiid. Joel Embiid is capable of dominating games at the 5 post. When he does this, the floor opens up for the other players. Covington and Stuaskas have benefited. Plus, Nerlens Noel is now playing significant minutes and closing the middle down while Embiid is enjoying a breather. That was something that Jah could not do.
So it was not a huge surprise that the Sixers were able to pull away from the Nets today in the fourth quarter. At this stage, they are just a better team. That may not be saying much – after all, the Nets are the worst team in the NBA. But I took pleasure in watching the Sixers do to the Nets what so many teams have done to them — perform in the clutch.
Next step – getting Simmons out there!
Go for it!