The Sixers rediscovered their mojo in Friday’s 119-107 win over Memphis, and any wise fan that only watches the home games would think, “Why is everyone always so worried about the Sixers?” Philadelphia is now 23-2 at the Wells Fargo Center entering Sunday’s game against Chicago, and thanks to the Indiana Pacers losing five straight games, they’re back up to fifth place in the Eastern Conference. Almost back to home-court advantage in the first round of the playoffs, can you taste it?
Philadelphia’s frontcourt could look a little different than usual this evening, as both Joel Embiid and Al Horford are listed as questionable, Embiid with the neck stiffness that caused him to leave Friday’s game early, and Horford with achilles soreness. The Sixers could be rolling out a center rotation of Kyle O’Quinn, who is back with the team after being there for the arrival of his twin babies (mazel tov!), and Norvel Pelle, who was signed to a full NBA contract earlier this week.
Meanwhile, the wing rotation may look the same, as trade deadline acquisitions Alec Burks and Glenn Robinson III are scheduled to undergo their physicals this morning and are currently considered out for tonight’s game, although that situation remains fluid. How on earth two players aren’t automatically available to suit up over three full days after a trade takes place is this day and age is another inexplicably weird episode in the history of the Sixers’ front office/medical staff. But, whatever, Josh Richardson looked healthy in his return Friday and who needs those guys when you have Furkan Korkmaz ready to pop off and make it rain with another 30-burger?
Still, even shorthanded, the Sixers should emerge victorious. After all, they’re at home, right? Right. End of article.
But really, the Bulls are struggling, losers of four straight games, and missing their entire opening night starting frontcourt of Otto Porter, Lauri Markkanen, and Wendell Carter Jr, plus versatile perimeter defender Kris Dunn. Even top scorer Zach LaVine is questionable with neck soreness, although he has suited up for every game this season, so you have to imagine he’ll try to give it a go.
Still, if ever there was a time for the Sixers to make sure their guys are at 100 percent, tonight would be it. They had a relatively stress-free 100-89 win over Chicago just a few weeks ago without Embiid, and even if their frontcourt guys take a seat, you would think they have enough pieces to run the Bulls off the court.
Who: Philadelphia 76ers vs. Chicago Bulls
When: 6:00 pm ET
Where: Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, PA
Watch: NBC Sports Philadelphia
Listen: 97.5 The Fanatic
Philadelphia: Joel Embiid (questionable - neck); Al Horford (questionable - achilles)
Chicago: Otto Porter (out - foot); Wendell Carter Jr (out - ankle); Lauri Markkanen (out - pelvis); Kris Dunn (out - knee); Denzel Valentine (doubtful - hamstring); Daniel Gafford (questionable - ankle); Zach LaVine (questionable - neck)