Sixers’ Marquee Matchups Sure to Deliver This Season


The NBA released its 2019-2020 schedule Monday, leading to discussion across the league. Marquee match-ups, reunions, and holiday games were all immediately noted. For Philadelphia, there was no shortage of this discussion. The schedule features many games that certainly will excite the Sixers’ faithful. Al Horford and Josh Richardson joined the team this offseason. Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons are getting better every year, and Tobias Harris now has the spotlight and chance to shine as the go-to three-point option. Philly is primed to be a top contender next season. The hype is real, but naturally, some match-ups are more noted than others.


Reunions Abound

The 2019 offseason saw much fluidity with the Sixers roster. Players entered and exited, leading to enticing games early on the Sixers schedule. The first of these games is the regular season opener, when Horford will have his reunion with the Boston Celtics on October 23rd. In the aftermath of Horford’s signing, Boston raised tampering allegations, creating bad blood between the two camps. Horford played a significant role in the Celtics’ domination over the Sixers in recent seasons, so it will be interesting to see how he plays against his former team.

The next notable reunion on the schedule comes November 23rd. Jimmy Butler and the Miami Heat travel to Philadelphia for Butler’s first game against his former team. After being a crucial part of Philly’s playoff run last season, Butler left following a rumor-filled free agency. How Philly fans will receive Butler is uncertain. With Miami verging on a playoff spot, this is a good measuring stick game to see where they stand early against one of the East’s elite teams. This game is also a reunion for Josh Richardson, who recently said he wants to “kill the Heat.”

Fan-favorite JJ Redick returns to Philadelphia on December 13th. Redick left Philadelphia in free agency after signing a two-year deal with the New Orleans Pelicans. The Sixers’ single-season 3-point record holder will most likely get a warm welcome from the Philly faithful.

The Big Games

Reunions are pleasant, but most of the Sixers’ reunion games come against inferior opponents. Luckily, the Sixers have plenty of big-time games on the schedule this year as well. Christmas Day features a matchup between the Sixers and the Milwaukee Bucks, led by Giannis Antetokounmpo.

Last year’s Eastern Conference top seed will work towards building on last year’s success while getting the opportunity to play another top contender. This game could be a preview of the Eastern Conference Finals if both teams continue to succeed.

Do you want a potential NBA Finals preview? Look no further than January 25th when the Los Angeles Lakers come to town. LeBron James leads the new-look Lakers into the Wells Fargo Center for ABC’s NBA Saturday Primetime feature. With the hype surrounding both teams, this is a must-watch game in the heart of the season.

Raptor Revenge

Last year’s playoffs brought a disappointing end for Philadelphia. The infamous “quadruple-doink” will haunt fans’ memories for years. Luckily, the Sixers won’t wait too long for a chance to get revenge against the Raptors. Philadelphia travels to Toronto on November 25th for what surely will be an energized and emotional game. They’ll have to wait slightly longer for a chance to beat the player responsible for the shot. The Sixers wait until February 11th to face Kawhi Leonard and the revamped Los Angeles Clippers. This match will once again be a thrilling showdown between two championship contenders.

The excitement surrounding the Philadelphia 76ers is at an all-time high. With the release of this season’s schedule, that excitement has only grown. In a season stocked with drama-filled reunions and star-studded primetime match-ups, there will inevitably be plenty of storylines to discuss. Time will tell whether this new Sixers team is up for the challenge, or if the dream will fall short once again.

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About Dave Pedron

As a Pennsylvania native, Penn State grad, and diehard Sixers fan, I'm very excited to cover the team and usher in the next chapter of the Process.

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