WATCH: Kendrick Perkins and JJ Redick talk Sixers title chances in a crowded Eastern Conference on ESPN’s First Take
After a very slow start to the 2022-23 NBA season, the Philadelphia 76ers have now won eight of their last 10 games to improve to 20-13 on the year.
The Sixers are sitting in fifth place in the Eastern Conference Standings, four games behind the first-place Boston Celtics.
Sixers Eastern Conference Standings
Joel Embiid is leading the NBA in scoring and James Harden looks like the Harden of old, finally connecting the dots and completely in sync with Embiid on the basketball court.
On ESPN’s First Take earlier this week, Kendrick Perkins and JJ Redick discussed the Philadelphia 76ers and where they currently fit into the race to be crowned Eastern Conference champions at the end of the season.
Kendrick Perkins and JJ Redick on the 76ers
Perkins: We’re talking about between the 76ers and the Nets and you’re asking me who I trust the most? I’m going with the 76ers and let me ask you this, me and you both played for Doc Rivers. Do you not trust Doc Rivers when you had one of your best seasons and was having some your best seasons under Doc Rivers?
Redick: Of course! Of course, if we’re being frank though, Doc Rivers has also blown a lot of playoff series leads. He’s the only guy to do it more than once, and he’s done it three times in terms of having a 3-1 lead and that’s not all on him, it’s on the players, too. I was on one of those teams. It was on me, too. I’m not blaming Doc.
When talking about the Sixers title chances, literally only one thing matters. I want to see Joel Embiid and company enter the playoffs completely healthy. No more freak injuries at the end of the year that leave Philly limping into the playoffs and Joel Embiid completely miserable trying to carry this team while batting through multiple injuries. Simply cannot have it anymore.
As for Doc Rivers and his struggles in the NBA playoffs, I think everyone is well aware of that by now and thankfully, I really don’t think it will be that big of an issue because he rarely coaches anyways. The 76ers simply need to stay healthy and give the city of Philadelphia a fair shake at an NBA Title.
There are two games left to be played in 2022 for the Sixers. Tomorrow night, they will face thee New Orleans Pelicans before heading to Oklahoma City to face the Thunder on New Year’s Eve.