The Philadelphia 76ers ended 2017 on the right foot, and against the San Antonio Spurs they will look to kick off 2018 with a big win. While the team has looked lost at points they still have the pieces to make a playoff run, especially with some players expected back from injury soon. This game is going to be a good test for a young Sixers team that hasn’t shown the knack to come up big against teams with playoff experience.
A New Years Eve win against the Phoenix Suns has the team feeling good about their play, Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, and Dario Saric all showed why fans should be excited for the new year, dropping 22 points, 21 points, and 27 points respectively. But once again, just like most recent games, the momentum swing almost killed the Sixers once again as the Suns came back from 18 points down to take the lead. This game ended much differently though, as the Sixers made sure there was reason to celebrate as the ball dropped in Times Square.
The Spurs are coming off a tough win against the New York Knicks last night, 100-91, and have now won five straight. The return of Kawhi Leonard cannot be understated, as he has given the already dangerous Spurs another top tier weapon. The Sixers will be catching a break tonight though, as the Spurs have decided to rest Leonard, along with several other valuable pieces like Danny Green, Manu Ginobili, Rudy Gay, and Tony Parker. This is a chance for the young Sixers to beat an undermanned playoff powerhouse at home, so expect the team to come out firing.
Brett Brown revenge game?: Going up against his former team, Brett Brown is sure to be a little more fired up than normal tonight. In past games Brown has tried to run the Sixers how the Spurs run their offense, quick passes to free up players on the wings or down low, but it hasn’t worked out. Right now the Sixers are turning the ball over too much for that style of play to work, but if Brown wants to get a big win against the Spurs, the team may need to take advantage of an undermanned team using their own style of play.
More minutes for Holmes?: Brett Brown’s reasoning behind not playing Richaun Holmes is because of the stretch of games against more traditional big men. The Spurs lack that type of big man so Holmes’ quicker, more above the rim style might work more than Amir Johnson’s big body off of the bench.
When is Markelle Fultz expected back?: No updates, I just miss him.
Game Time: 7:00
Watch: NBC Sports Philadelphia
Listen: 97.5 The Fanatic