Sixers vs. Raptors Preview: Philly Hosts Struggling Dinos

Can't touch this - John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Spo

The luckless Toronto Raptors journey to Philadelphia to take on the Bynumless Philadelphia 76ers. Expect much self-pitying.

On paper, this would appear to be a fairly straightforward match-up. In the midst of one of the lighter portions of their schedule, the 76ers are at home, hosting the cellar-dwelling Toronto Raptors. But if there's one thing worth knowing, it's that nothing about the 2012-13 Toronto Raptors is straightforward. The amount of unique and creative ways this team has found to make wins not exist fills Ronaiah Tuiasosopo with envy.

This will be the fourth and final meeting between Philly and Toronto this year in a basketball "rivalry" most well known for things that happened in 2001. One of these things being a hockey related event. The other: the 2001 Eastern Conference Semifinals where the Sixers eliminated the Raptors in seven games, culminating in a game which saw Mike Breen and Bill Walton calling announcing on NBC with Doug Collins. (segue)

Doug Collins's Sixers have not been doing so well as of late. They have lost 8 of their last 10 games, six of which were tough ones on the road. The other two were at home against New Orleans and on the road against Toronto. The Hornets won by 18. The Raptors won by 12.

Heading into their previous meeting, the Raptors were pretty hot, but since beating the Sixers, it has been all downhill for Canada's Team. The Raptors have lost three in a row and most recently an overtime heartbreaker against the Bulls which saw the Raptors claw their way back from a 19-point deficit only to lose by two in overtime.

In that game, former Villanova point guard Kyle Lowry had 26 points on 15 shots. Despite a very productive night for KLOE, he was neither his team's biggest scorer nor the game's biggest scorer. Those honors belonged to Alan Anderson and Carlos Boozer, respectively.

To the bullet points below!

  • Shelvin Mack signed with the Sixers, thereby seemingly ending the Maalik Wayns era in Philadelphia. While I have not watched Mack nearly as much as I watched Sheep in college, I did enjoy watching Mack the few times I did see him in the NCAA Tournament. Here's hoping his NBA production with the Sixers can at least be described as "better than Royal Ivey now."
  • Has anyone stopped to think maybe Doug Collins is intentionally trying to troll us? How else do the Sixers give Damien Wilkins, Royal Ivey, and Kwame Brown meaningful minutes?
  • Eventually people will realize Kirk Hinrich is bad at basketball. But until then, enjoy the fact that he can play 34 minutes in a game against the Raptors and only manage 3 points.
  • The Liberty Ballers Community is very excited to watch more Ed Davis and pine for him.
  • Lennay Kekua got me thinking. What Sixer is most likely to fall for a nonexistent girl in a Manti Te'o catfish like hoax. My money's on Lavoy Allen. Leave your thoughts on this very important matter in the comments section! First person to speculate Spencer Hawes wins a cookie freshly baked from Mr. and Mrs. Kekua.
  • Venturing a guess that Spencer Hawes will wish he could wear his America headband for this game. MURRICA RULEZ! CANADA DROOLZ!
  • Interested in reading about this game from a Toronto perspective? Check out our good friends at Raptors HQ for Toronto Raptors news, analysis, and commentary.
  • Needing to attend a Sixers game? Purchase Philadelphia 76ers Tickets starting as low as $5 for tonight.
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