No other team is heading into the NBA playoffs hotter than the Philadelphia 76ers.
The 76ers breezed to a 14th straight win on Sunday, beating the Dallas Mavericks 109-97 — notching their first 50-win season since an Allen Iverson-led 2000-01 Sixers team went 56-26 on its way to the NBA Finals.
Not only have the Sixers of today hit stride at the right time, just days removed from getting into the playoffs — ending a six-year drought — but they’ve also secured first-round homecourt advantage by being 2.5 games over the fifth-place Indiana Pacers.
The Process (continually tanking seasons to build up draft picks for the future) is ahead of schedule. The 76ers have two franchise cornerstones in Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid (currently sidelined after suffering a fractured orbital bone, no date set for his return). The team has a lot of young talent that will play hard and let it all hang loose. Everything is clicking.
With their youthful role players and Simmons healthy, the 76ers stand to be LeBron James‘ toughest challenge to getting back to the NBA Finals in the Eastern Conference. The #1 seed Toronto Raptors are notoriously bad when it comes to playoff time and the #2 seed Boston Celtics are without star player Kyrie Irving for their playoffs.
When you’re an upstart team like the 76ers, you can go all out and show the league you have nothing to lose. Time is on your side.