Sixers’ Struggles Continue Into 2020


As the season progresses, the Sixers struggles on the road are becoming a significant concern. The listless and disappointing 116-95 Celtics loss on Saturday night was no exception; 17 of their 19 losses have been away from the friendly confines of the Wells Fargo Center.

The Sixers are now sixth in the Eastern Conference, 11.5 games behind the number one-seeded Bucks and suddenly five games behind the second-seeded Raptors.

The Big Loss

Before this matchup, the Sixers have had three impactful wins over the Celtics, including ending Boston’s perfect record at home. Two of those wins consisted of dominant play from Joel Embiid, one of Philadelphia’s two All-Stars. However, Embiid’s dominance is what this game lacked. He totaled 11 points on only 1-11 shooting, in addition to 5 rebounds and 4 turnovers.

Making this loss even worse was that both Kemba Walker and Enes Kanter were both out due to injuries. This season, Walker has averaged 22.3 points per game against the Sixers, while Kanter has contributed 13.3 points per game against them. However, even without the duo, the Celtics were able to establish a 22-8 lead late in the first quarter. This run ultimately provided a steady path to victory.

Ben Simmons, Philly’s other all-star, has continued to do everything he can to keep the team moving. Ben’s performance was the only positive note about Saturday’s game. His aggressiveness allowed him to tally 23 points, shooting 9-14 with nine rebounds and five assists.

Should we Have Already Been Concerned?

Reporters asked Tobias Harris when the team’s position in the standings should become a concern. He responded with, “What point? Probably ten games ago.”

He has a point, but it’s hard to determine the real ceiling of the Sixers without being able to see a consistent lineup. Out of 50 total games played this season, the starters have only played together in 19 of them, which is only 38%.

The influx of injuries to the starters this season has caused Brett Brown to make questionable choices relating to who should start and be on the court together.

What’s Ahead

As the trade deadline approaches, the Sixers will play in Miami on Monday.  Following that, the Sixers and the Bucks meet on the road on Thursday. The Sixers need to remain focused on the here-and-now before thinking about the playoffs. However, they may be interested in a potential roster move that can inject some life and energy into a team that is looking for some momentum.

About Dakota Hurwitz

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