You can only say so much about the Raptors/Sixers matchup. It’s the season finale between these two teams, and it couldn’t come soon enough. In their first three meetings, the Raptors outscored the Sixers by a combined 55 points. It hasn’t been pretty.
DeMar DeRozan, a career 29.2% three-point shooter, has wrecked the Sixers this season, going for an average of 34.7 points per game while shooting 58.8% from range. It’s absurd. In those same games, the Sixers have shot a combined 30% from distance. There’s no real reason to believe that this is going to change today. The Raptors are one of the east’s elite teams, and the Sixers are not that.
In many ways, today’s game marks the end of the first half of the season. It’s only game #40, but the Sixers are now fully clear of the time padded around the London game, and while they face a rough stretch this month (they’ll play 8 games in 14 days, the last 4 on the road to end the month) it clears up a little after that. The Sixers never travel further west than San Antonio for the rest of the year, and they spend all of February playing winnable games (Miami twice, Washington twice, Pacers, Pelicans, Clippers, Knicks, Bulls, and Magic). That stretch of games will likely tell us who this team really is. But today, some mid-day basketball is going to happen, and it likely won’t end well.
1:00 PM / Wells Fargo Center / NBC Sports Philadelphia / 97.5 the Fanatic