Sixers Look To Make a Deep Playoff Run


Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons

Chase Zemitis, Centurion Staff

As this year’s NBA regular season came to an end, the Philadelphia 76ers found themselves in what seems to be a commanding position to make a serious run at a league championship.
For fans who have been following “The Process” era of 76ers basketball, this post season looks as promising as ever.
With the playoffs clinched for the Sixers for the fifth straight year, newly added star James Harden has tons of fans hopeful for the franchise’s first championship since 1983.
However, the Sixers are going to have to play tough teams to get there.
Due to the caliber of teams the 76ers will face in the postseason, not every Philadelphia fan is sold on the prospect of a national title.
Kyle Rovny, a 22-year-old Student at West Chester says, “The Sixers will make it to the second round because of the lack of talent on the bench for the squad which during the course of the regular season, they have struggled to put away teams. If the Sixers play the Celtics and Heat over the Bucks or Nets, they have a better chance at making the Eastern conference finals.”
The last time the Sixer’s made it past the second round was in 2001 during the successful era of Allen Iverson’s lineup.
Iverson led the team to the NBA championship series against the Los Angeles Lakers. Unfortunately, that Lakers team was formed around arguably one of the best scoring duos the league has ever seen in Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal.
While Iverson and his 76ers were able to take game one in overtime, the Lakers went on a four-game winning streak to clinch the series.
In 2019, the Sixers were on a sure-fire path to the finals until Kahwi Leonard and the Toronto Raptors in round two.
Still tough, the series looked to be going in favor of the Sixers, until Kawhi made the most infamous shot of his career and smashed the hopes of an entire city.
Kawhi and his Toronto Raptors would go on to win the championship in 2019. Which made the loss that much harder for Philadelphia.
The Sixers currently are in second place of the Atlantic division and fourth in the Eastern conference.
With the seeding of this year’s playoffs, the Sixers had a chance at redemption against the Raptors in the first round. This was the third time since 2001 the two teams have faced off in the postseason.
Harden and Joel Embiid’s offense was more than prepared to attack the seemingly impenetrable defense of the Raptors but will be forced to do so without rising star Matisse Thybulle for what could be half of the series.
Thybulle was ruled out for games being played in Toronto due to Canada’s vaccine mandates that are still in effect.
Thybulle has received one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine but needs to be fully vaccinated to play in Toronto.
In game one of the first round, the Sixers dominated the Raptors Saturday night winning 131-111 with Tyrese Maxey leading the scoring with 38 points.
Embiid also put up 19 points in the victory over a tough Raptors team and with James Harden putting up 22 points to help put away the game.
The Sixers also won game two and three, but lost two in a row to bring the series to 3-2.
The Sixers won game six by 35 points, but Joel Embiid suffered a broken orbital bone and a concussion, and it is not sure when he can return. The Sixers will face off against the Miami Heat in the second round, with the first game being on May 2.