In-Season Tournament or not, this has been a bizarrely front-loaded schedule. The Sixers are in Boston tonight to take on the Celtics. It’ll be the third matchup between the rivals in less than 20 games so far this season.
With both teams taking a game in their two November matchups in Philadelphia, this is a big one in terms of getting the tie-breaker for playoff seeding scenarios.
This won’t be an easy one for the Sixers, coming off their worst loss of the year, losing 124-114 to the New Orleans Pelicans in a game that was not as close as the final score would indicate.
They hoped for a chance at Kelly Oubre Jr. making his return to action for this one after he practiced with the team this week and is traveling with the team on this road trip. They’ll have to wait a little bit more however, as The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported last night that the team is targeting a return for next week for Oubre.
While Danuel House Jr. is also still listed as out, Philly could get some reinforcements on the wing as Jaden Springer has been upgraded to questionable after missing the last three games with an illness, and Nico Batum is also probable after re-injuring his finger Wednesday night in New Orleans.
The biggest Sixer still on the injury report remains Joel Embiid, who was a late scratch Wednesday night with an illness, he is also listed as questionable. Philly will have the league’s new rules regarding load management and resting stars to consider when determining Embiid’s status, as this game was just recently flexed to the ESPN game.
The Celtics will once again be without Kristaps Porzingis, who injured his calf last Friday. Porzignis also missed the previous matchup between these two teams a couple weeks ago, though Boston did not seem to miss him much. Al Horford knocked down four three-pointers and locked down Embiid in the fourth quarter like he’s done so many times before.
So if the Sixers’ best player is even available for this one, those ever-present Celtic demons will be there for him to once again exorcise.
Who: Philadelphia 76ers vs. Boston Celtics
When: 7:30 pm EST
Where: TD Garden, Boston, MA
Watch: NBC Sports Philadelphia, ESPN
Radio: 97.5 The Fanatic