Basketball is back: 76ers-Raptors preseason opener preview
After months of waiting, the Philadelphia 76ers are finally back in action tonight for their first preseason matchup on the road against the Toronto Raptors. 76ers training camp kicked off just a week ago, and the team will slowly return to the regular season, playing four games over the next two weeks before opening night on the 20th.
As we all know, the preseason isn’t about winning but getting everyone back into game speed and implementing the scheme for this upcoming season. More often than not, most of the team’s best players won’t partake in the preseason, and that looks to be the case once again tonight. Joel Embiid will be out due alongside Charles Bassey and Ben Simmons. Bassey is out due to his work visa not being ready in time, but the 76ers said this won’t be an issue for the remainder of the season.
Without Embiid, the 76ers’ starting lineup will likely be Tyrese Maxey, Seth Curry, Danny Green, Tobias Harris, and Andre Drummond. During the Nets-Lakers preseason match, almost every star sat out while Anthony Davis played one quarter, so don’t expect to see the starters to see a lot of minutes on the court.
Tyrese Maxey is a likely exemption to that rule, as Doc Rivers prepares him as the starting point guard for the foreseeable future. Maxey also saw time this summer with the Sixers’ summer league team in Las Vegas. It’ll be exciting to see the strides that Paul Reed and Isaiah Joe made this offseason while seeing Jaden Springer, Grant Riller, and Aaron Henry play their first minutes with the franchise.
There won’t be much to learn from tonight’s matchup that we don’t already know outside of how players have developed. The starting lineup and rotation, for the most part, look to be solidified, but after the Phillies and Eagles’ performances this weekend, it’ll be nice to see another Philly team play for once.
Mandatory Credit: Philadelphia Inquirer