With all of the Eagles and Flyers stuff going on, I felt like it made more sense to wrap the Spurs, Cavs, and Pacers games together into one article. We don’t need a standalone post for a 27-point road loss on the second night of a back-to-back, do we?
If it feels like a blur, it probably is. This is the part of the season where the games start to bleed together. You’re likely running around trying to get holiday things done while the team slogs toward the inevitability of the buyout market as we near the halfway point of the 82-game schedule. That’s all good and well, but unfortunately the Sixers are now hitting a hellish stretch of the schedule that includes a home game with Toronto followed by five straight road games against Boston, Portland, Utah, Phoenix, and the Clippers.
Let’s reset and refocus here, because they’ve lost three of four and are now sitting in fourth place at 20-12. We’re judging the Sixers not necessarily game-by-game, but trying to identify what their post-Jimmy Butler trade strengths and weaknesses are. What does this squad need? What are they good at? Where are they lagging behind? It’s a cumulative grind towards the playoffs.
I think it’s four things: perimeter defense, depth, the power forward position, and managing Joel Embiid. If we’re justifiably looking ahead to the postseason and how this team matches up against the best squads in the east, then these things would probably go into the Sixers’ “premortem,” as Brett Brown likes to say.