2019-20 NBA Team Preview Series: Philadelphia 76ers
BILL STREICHER/USA TODAY SPORTS
The 2019-2020 NBA season starts October 22nd and to get you ready for tip-off, Off the Glass is previewing all 30 teams. Today we look at the Philadelphia 76ers.
2018-2019 Record: 51-31, 2nd in the Atlantic Division. Lost 3-4 in the 2nd round to the Toronto Raptors.
Season Recap: Philadelphia’s 2018-19 NBA season will always be remembered as the season where they went for it making two huge trades during the course of the season. They used their future assets to add Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris to the All-Star duo of Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons. While they were seen as risky moves, they paid off for Philadelphia as they rolled into the 2nd round of the playoffs looking like a team that could make it to the Finals. Unfortunately, they ran into Kawhi Leonard and the Toronto Raptors. Their loss in Game 7 will go down as one of the worst losses in the history of the sport due to the fact that Leonard’s last second game winner bounced around the rim for what seemed like an eternity.
Key Losses: Jimmy Butler, G-F; Boban Marjanovic, C; JJ Redick, G; TJ McConnell, G; Greg Monroe, C;
Key Additions: Al Horford, F-C; Josh Richardson, G-F; Trey Burke, G; Kyle O’Quinn; Raul Neto, G;
Preview: It is a very popular opinion to say that the 76ers are one of the two best teams in the Eastern Conference and it is easy to see why. They return Embiid, Simmons, and Harris to go along with the additions of Al Horford and Josh Richardson. Their starting lineup is going to be a nightmare for opposing offenses and they are extremely versatile in the things that they can do. Philadelphia has the personnel to go big or small and they have some offensive versatility thanks to the additions of Horford and Richardson, two players with the ability to shoot and make plays for others. Losing Butler hurts, but the Sixers have replaced him with two quality players that make them the favorite to represent the East in the Finals according to many people.
Player to Watch: Ben Simmons, G-F
Team X-Factor: Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons’ shot selection, will Embiid take more shots in the paint and Simmons take more shots from outside the paint?
Worst Case Scenario: The Sixers are great in the regular season, but their issues with Ben Simmons and their offense
come to light in an early playoff exit.
Best Case Scenario: The Sixers figure out ways to keep Ben Simmons involved as an offensive threat and dominate the regular season leading to an NBA Championship for the Process.
Actual 2019-2020 Prediction: 58-24, 1st in the Atlantic Division