Wednesday will be another night where most of the city may not exactly be focused on the local basketball team, but no worries, we have you covered here at Liberty Ballers. The Philadelphia 76ers continue their preseason campaign with a rematch against the Boston Celtics, this time in South Philadelphia, and we have some things you can look out for.
What is currently up in the air is exactly who will be on the court Wednesday evening for Philadelphia. Nick Nurse mentioned on Tuesday that while James Harden was indeed a full participant in practice, his status is unknown for Wednesday night after he missed the first preseason game alongside teammate Joel Embiid. We will bring you updates on the expected roster for the game as they’re available.
Nick Nurse said James Harden was a full participant in practice today, that players’ statuses for tomorrow’s preseason game vs. Boston are TBD.— Noah Levick (@NoahLevick) October 10, 2023
Nurse said Furkan Korkmaz (leg strain) will be out again but is expected back for the Sixers’ third preseason game.
If Embiid and/or Harden do indeed take the court, it will be the first chance to get an insight on how Nurse plans to integrate the stars with some of the younger players and new faces in the depth of this roster. A glimpse at the level of effort Harden plans to put in for the Sixers this season? Maybe some testing of the Embiid/Paul Reed pairing that Nurse has teased this offseason? We’ll just have to wait and see what the decisions on their statuses are.
Regardless, while the exact caliber of star power is up in the air, there’s certainly things to watch for even if Harden and Embiid sit this one out as well.
This past Sunday, the Celtics were able to defeat a shorthanded Sixers squad 114-106 at TD Garden, but it wasn’t for a lack of fight from Philadelphia. Without Embiid and Harden on Sunday, Tyrese Maxey picked up the slack, leading the team with 24 points. Maxey has recently discussed working on active defending, pace, and being aggressive over this past offseason, and it showed right out of the gate in their opening preseason game.
Another player to watch after Sunday’s display is Jaden Springer. Springer showed flashes of tremendous play on both ends of the ball against the Celtics in the first game, including scoring 14 points, grabbing five rebounds and putting up a stellar, high-flying block on Jayson Tatum. Springer certainly earned at least a longer look from Sixers’ coaches and fans alike to see if he can replicate his excellent performance from Sunday.
It will also be another chance to see more of players like Paul Reed, Patrick Beverley, Kelly Oubre Jr., and Mo Bamba, who all may feature heavily in the Sixers’ rotation this regular season, as they get more comfortable in new roles for Philadelphia.
The Sixers and Celtics tip off at Wells Fargo Center at 7 p.m.
Hopefully the building is shaking from a blisteringly loud crowd across the street at Citizens Bank Park. Go Phils.
Update: Joel Embiid, James Harden and Furkan Korkmaz will all be out for Wednesday’s game.
Joel Embiid, James Harden and Furkan Korkmaz are out tonight, per Sixers official— Sam DiGiovanni (@BySamDiGiovanni) October 11, 2023
When: 7:00 pm EST, Wednesday, Oct. 11
Where: Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, PA
Watch: NBC Sports Philadelphia, NBA TV
Radio: 97.5 The Fanatic