The Philadelphia 76ers are back in action tonight, with a marquee matchup against the 20-5 Toronto Raptors at Scotiabank Arena. The Sixers enter the contest on the heels of a 103-95 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies, making the team winners of 8 of their last 9 games, and 8-2 overall since the acquisition of Jimmy Butler. The team is playing well and seem to be meshing on the court and in the locker room. Wilson Chandler is also expected to rejoin the starting lineup after missing Sunday’s contest with an injured quad. Let’s hope the starters can keep it rolling.
The #Sixers' new starting lineup:— Tom West (@TomWestNBA) December 5, 2018
115.2 offensive rating
97 defensive rating
18.2 net rating (5th best among 5-man lineups with at least 100 mins)
The Raptors, meanwhile, are back at it after losing just their fifth game of the season on Monday night to The Denver Nuggets, 106-103. Showcasing potentially the deepest two-way rotation in all of basketball, the Raptors have been able to maintain a feverish start to the season thanks in large part to the consistent play of point guard Kyle Lowry and small forward Kawhi Leonard.
A tall task lies ahead for the Sixers as they must find a way to contend with the depth of a Raptors team that features rotational players Fred VanVleet, Danny Green, OG Anunoby, and the emerging Pascal Siakam. When last these two teams met in October, the Sixers lost in T Dot by a score of 129-112. Obviously, that was B.J. (before Jimmy. Needs some work.)
This figures to be an opportunity for an early-season statement game from this new Sixers nucleus, and a litmus test for how they now stack up against the best team in the conference. So grab your headbands and rest your Thoracic Outlets, it’s nearly time to basketball.
BONUS: Keep an eye on Ben Simmons and Kyle Lowry. The double-ejection from last year could linger in a high-stakes matchup.
Who: Sixers vs Raptors
Where: Scotiabank Arena, Toronto, ON.
When: 8:00 PM EST
Watch: NBC Sports Philadelphia, ESPN
Listen: 97.5 The Fanatic