76ers Basketball is BACK. What to watch tonight vs Boston
After a 114 day absence from 76ers basketball, Philadelphia will kick off their first of two preseason games tonight. Oddly enough, Philly will be playing the team who knocked them out of the playoffs in the Boston Celtics. The anticipation is high for the 2020/2021 season. Since their last game, the 76ers have redone their entire front office and coaching staff alongside significant roster adjustments.
Here are some things to watch during tonight’s game.
Finally! We have spacing.
After an entire season of dealing with a starting lineup consisting of two centers and a point guard who needs the lane to function, spacing is a much-needed breath of fresh air. The offense last season was incredibly clunky and at times, the Sixers had players standing around and ball movement was non-existent. To address this, the Sixers removed Al Horford and Josh Richardson from the equation and added two premier perimeter threats in Seth Curry and Danny Green. The hype around Curry has been through the roof and his abilities from deep is something this team has desperately needed since the loss of JJ Redick.
Rookie Isaiah Joe has also been known for his perimeter threat and looks to make an impact right off the bat for Philadelphia. There is also hope that players like Shake Milton and Matisse Thybulle can continue to make strides in their game from the three-point line. Regardless, the difference in shooting from last season to now is night and day.
New Sheriff in town:
When the 76ers moved on from Brett Brown after the playoffs there was a major question about who would replace him. Luckily, the Sixers had a championship-winning Hall of Fame coach fall into their laps in Doc Rivers. The confidence from these players about the new staff led by Rivers is fantastic to see. Hopefully, the new players and change in rotations can provide a spark we have yet to see from these Sixers. His staff in Dave Joerger and Sam Cassell look to be among the best in the league and here is a lot of hope in the ability from these two to develop the Sixers current roster and find the right roles for them to be successful.
During free agency, one of the more underrated moves in the NBA was the Sixers signing Dwight Howard to a vet minimum contract. Howard will be replacing Al Horford as the team’s backup center and be a mentor to Joel and the young bigs.
Alongside Howard is the youth movement for the 76ers that could provide huge amounts of energy off the bench. Rookie Tyrese Maxey alongside Matisse Thybulle and Shake Milton are a young but high upside group for the Sixers. All three have major steps they can take in their game and how they respond to this will be a huge test.
Mandatory Credit: Philadelphia 76ers