Game Preview: Sixers at Cavaliers
Lost in all of the excitement of the Philadelphia Eagles offseason is the 76ers having 15 games remaining with their regular season schedule. Beginning with a three-game road trip that tips off tonight in a huge Eastern Conference matchup against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Philadelphia and Cleveland split the first two games played this campaign with each team winning on their home floor. Tonight marks the third and final game of their three-game series. It could turn out to be a very important game when it comes to a tie-breaking situation for the postseason. The Sixers currently have a four-game lead in the East standings over the Cavaliers. They sit in the third seed as the Cavs trail the 76ers occupying the fourth spot.
Philadelphia is riding a league-best five-game winning streak. They won the final three games of their previous road trip. Before returning home to sweep the quick two-game homestand this past weekend against the Portland Trailblazers and Washington Wizards. Cleveland’s two wins in a row are courtesy of their two-game road series versus the Charlotte Hornets. The latest coming on Tuesday night as part of their back-to-back defeating the Hornets, 120-104. Philadelphia will look to take advantage of Cavs playing for the second consecutive night.
On Monday, the NBA announced Joel Embiid as the Eastern Conference Player of the Week. He helped lead the team to an undefeated league-best 4-0 record during the week. This marks the 10th time in his career that the big fella has been recognized for this award, and the 3rd time this season. With Embiid’s strong play and the wins piling up, the Sixers are now just one game back of the Boston Celtics for the two-seed and four behind the top-seeded Milwaukee Bucks.
The 76ers will look to contain one of the more dynamic backcourts in the NBA with Donovan Mitchell and Darius Garland able to go off and win a game because of their scoring. The frontcourt of Jarrett Allen and Evan Mobley will also need to be accounted for because of their ability on both ends of the floor in terms of scoring and keeping them off the glass… preventing them from offensive rebounds and second-chance opportunities.
Much has been mentioned of this basketball seeming to be different. If they do in fact have a different look, this is a game Philadelphia needs to win.