PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA - FEBRUARY 27: Tyrese Maxey #0 of the Philadelphia 76ers looks on during the fourth quarter against the Miami Heat at Wells Fargo Center on February 27, 2023 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

by John Kincade

76ers Math is looking difficult for climbing

Bob Cooney is a wise man. He has said over the past few weeks that he believed that the NBA Champion was going to come out of the Eastern Conference. I’m always cautious because I wonder if in pro sports when one conference is especially rugged as the Eastern Conference is this season that the Western Champions may have a chance to arrive at the Finals more refreshed and unscathed. After observing the last few weeks it’s clear that the East has at least 3 teams that are far better than anything that the West has to offer. Memphis losing Ja Morant to his own brand of self destruction certainly helps make that more of a reality. The 76ers already have 45 wins and are quickly approaching securing the 3 seed at worst in the Eastern Conference. Can they climb up higher? That doesn’t look as promising.

The final 15 games for the 76ers include only 5 home games and 7 of the next 8 on the road. They depart now for the next 3 games with winnable contests at Cleveland, Charlotte and Indiana. If the 76ers were able to keep this 5 game winning streak going things could get interesting. They trail the Boston Celtics by 1.5 games but only by one game in the loss column. Due to the fact Boston is (3-0) against the 76ers in the season series they must end with a better record than Boston to secure the 2 seed. Boston in their final 14 games has only 6 home games and now have a 5 game road trip ahead of them. The Celtics will face Houston, Minnesota, Portland, Utah and Sacramento. Should the 76ers find themselves even with the Celtics after that trip things could get interesting. Whatever the outcome of these road trips, the 2 teams will meet one final time on April 4th in Philadelphia.

The way the 76ers have played on the road I’m not overly concerned that they will be ok in critical road games come playoff time. They are playing such an entertaining brand of basketball right now.

Eagles Free Agency

The new NFL 2023 season will officially begin this week. Today starts the official legal tampering period. Teams will begin to work out the parameters of deals with free agents and the Eagles roster has the chance to look drastically different. Even worse, it has the chance to look very talent thin. We spent 2022 bragging on the Eagles roster depth, but it will be a monumental task keeping this team from sliding in the NFL Hierarchy.

The return of Brandon Graham is a nice side dish, but a rotational player well into his 30’s is hardly a roster making difference maker. The Eagles better be blessed with some divine intervention to avoid the bottom falling out on the defensive side of the ball. If not, they will hope to see their offense bridge the gap. I’ve got every confidence that they are up to the challenge of elevating their production. Things are about to get a little tense and very interesting.