Last night, the 76ers finally conquered their late game woes on their way to an OT victory, their first win of the season. To get that monkey off their back and not have to deal with the added psychological stress of a historic winless streak should lead to better days/nights for the team. Furthermore, there is a quick turn around as the team flies down to A-Town to take on the Hawks for the second time this season.
The first time didn’t go so well for the Sixers as they got blown out 104-72, a let down after losing a tightly contested game vs OKC on opening night. However, maybe last nights win provides a confidence boost to propel them towards another victory?
Honestly, it’s a tall order. On top of it being a SEGABABA, last night’s hero (and once and future king) Joel Embiid will be glued to the bench, following the work load management plan set forth by the team prior to start of the season. In his stead, Jahlil Okafor, who also has his own work load management, will be starting at Center despite circumstantially getting a few minutes of run last night (Embiid was put into foul trouble early).
I can’t say I feel confident that the Sixers will be able to pull off the upset and notch their 2nd win of the season. While the Sixers are playing on consecutive nights, the Hawks have had 2 days off.
More importantly, the Hawks are just a match up and scheme nightmare for a team like the Sixers. The thought of Dennis Schroder slicing-and-dicing this defense or Kyle Korver serving up 3-bombs is very unsettling. It’s just very easy to juxtapose the experience/familiarity and lack thereof between the two teams. So with all the things working against them, this seems more like a ‘schedule loss’.
But, don’t fret! This is basketball and sometimes the ball may just bounce your way on any given night.