Philadelphia 76ers game previews between November 7 and November 13, including games against: Atlanta Hawks, Indiana Pacers, Indiana Pacers, Utah Jazz.
Monday, 7 November 2016 at 07:00 PM ET Home
The Utah Jazz are coming to town, and they're coming in with full force. With Gordon Hayward finally back from injury (and dropping 28 on the Knicks in his first game back), they're looking to start their very own winning streak to cement their place in this season's playoffs. And this could be a good place for them to start that winning streak, as the Sixers remain winless.
With Derrick Favors playing poorly after his last injury and Rudy Gobert having lots of foul trouble to start the season, the best plan of action for the Sixers will be to attack with their bigs. Joel Embiid will need to continue playing as well as he had, dragging Gobert away from the rim where he will be faster, rather than trying to bang with the stronger opponent down low. And on the opposite end of the spectrum, Jahlil Okafor will need to take the ball into the post when guarded by Favors, since he has been extra caution with care to protect from further injury. These are potentially the only advantages that Philly has over Utah, seeing as how the Jazz have much superior guard play with George Hill and Rodney Hood, as well as much superior play from their wings with Gordan Hayward finally coming back for them. Philly will need to exploit their only advantages for even a chance to remain in this game.
Wednesday, 9 November 2016 at 07:00 PM ET Away
In the first of a home and away with the Pacers, we're looking at another battle of young big men. Facing off will be the Pacers' Myles Turner and the Sixers very own Joel Embiid. Both players are putting up incredible numbers so far this season, Turner with 17 points and 7 rebounds to go with 2.7 blocks per game; Embiid with 18-6 to go with 3 blocks per game. Their numbers might be similar but their performances will most likely be quite different. The Pacers will be able to double Embiid whenever he starts to get hot, while if Turner starts to get hot the Sixers still have to worry about the Pacers star wing Paul George.
If the Sixers want to win this game (and we all know they do), they'll need Robert Covington to return to form. Currently shooting under 20% from the field (with an abysmal offensive rating of 50), he's been one of the absolute worst players in the NBA this season. They will need him to hit shots on the perimeter as well as play stellar defense against Paul George so that the Sixers will have space on the inside for Embiid on both ends of the floor.
Friday, 11 November 2016 at 07:00 PM ET Home
In the second game of a home and away with the Pacers, the Sixers are looking at the same situation they were in the first game of the set. They will need stellar team defense against the multifaceted Pacers offense, as well as multiple players having good offensive performances. The Pacers may not be playing perfectly at the moment since they have almost an entirely new core, but they still have enough tools between Paul George, Myles Turner, Jeff Teague, Monta Ellis, Al Jefferson, and Thad Young to explode at any moment. Especially against one of the bottom teams in the league like the Sixers.
Saturday, 12 November 2016 at 07:30 PM ET Away
The Atlanta Hawks have come out this NBA season firing. Dwight Howard seems to have turned back the clock, throwing down lobs and blocking shots like he's back in Orlando. With Paul Millsap playing like he's known to, and guys like Dennis Schroder finally stepping into their roles, they're on fire. Even with their starting SF Kent Bazemore playing like he forgot how to shoot they're still competitive game in and game out.
The gameplan will need to change for the Sixers to win this game. They won't be able to rely on Embiid down low due to Howard being hot and Millsap providing great help defense. They'll need one of their guards to step up and play some basketball. The most likely candidate is obviously Sergio Rodriguez, who is running the Sixers offense like no one has since Jrue Holiday, putting up a near double-double.