With the holiday season now in full swing, the NBA decided to give us our first gift yesterday in the form of an official preseason schedule.
This year each team will play between two and four games this preseason, with the Philadelphia 76ers players the least possible amount of games before they start the regular season.
Full NBA Preseason schedule: pic.twitter.com/QIpc6lWdO9
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 27, 2020
Instead of complaining about how the Sixers could use the extra two games gifted to other teams, I will breakdown our two games and even provide a prediction for the outcome for each of them.
vs Boston Celtics // December 15th – 7:00 PM ET
The first basketball game the 2020-2021 Sixers will play (even though it won’t count) will be against the last opponent they played, the division rival Boston Celtics. After being swept by the Celtics in the first round of the playoffs last year, the Sixers began an exciting offseason filled with roster turnover. After signing Daryl Morey to be their President of Basketball Operations, the Sixers not only rid themselves of the disappointing former Celtic Al Horford but also surrounded Ben Simmons with some impressive shooters (Seth Curry, Danny Green, Tyrese Maxey).
Even with the many changes, the Sixers endured this offseason they still have one major disadvantage compared to the Celtics: roster depth. While the Sixers will rely on their best players to carry them throughout the regular season, the preseason is where roster depth is key to getting a win, so because of this, I predict the Sixers will lose this “opening” game of the season by a score of 113-89.
@ Indiana Pacers //. December 18th – 6:00 PM ET
The second and final game of their shortened preseason will be up against the Indiana Pacers, a team that also was a first-round exit in last year’s playoffs. The last time the Sixers played the Pacers is no doubt still fresh in many Sixers fans’ minds as TJ Warren dropped 53 points on the Sixers in the bubble. However, TJ Warren will be embracing a much more important role with the Pacers this season, and due to such will likely hardly step on the court this game (and neither will many of the starters for each squad).
Unlike the Celtics, the Pacers are at a disadvantage against the Sixers when it comes to roster depth and because of this, I predict the Sixers will win by a score of 99-74 and finish the preseason at 1-1.
Featured Image: NBA Analysis Network