We are just under two months away from the Sixers’ season opener against Boston. After an incredible run last season expectations are high for this young group. This will be the second year that this core will have together and it should be very exciting to watch. With all of that being said here are my five hot takes heading into this season.
1) The Sixers will finish with more wins then they did last season.
I decided to have my smallest take start off the list. This take is not that crazy but I do think that this group will finish with more wins then they did last year. It is going to be tough to win more then 52 games but I believe that this team is going to do it. I could see this team improving to 57-60 wins this season.
2) Ben Simmons will have 20+ triple-doubles this season.
Now things get a little more interesting. I honestly believe that Ben Simmons is going to drastically increase his triple-double number from last season. In his rookie season coming off of a foot injury that sidelined him for a whole season he came out and posted 12 which ranked third in the NBA. This summer was his first NBA summer healthy and now knows the pace of the NBA on a nightly basis. I believe that this season Ben Simmons will start to move his name into the group of NBA elites, and he’ll do it by posting 20 or more triple-doubles.
3) The Sixers will have three All-Stars.
Let’s be honest here, the Sixers should have had two All-Stars last year so saying there will be a third this year isn’t that much of a stretch. Ben Simmons was snubbed of an All-Star bid last season on multiple of occasions. The third All-Star will most likely be Dario Saric unless Markelle Fultz comes out and shocks the world with his new jumpshot. Dario puts up great numbers across the board on a nightly basis and should be a rookie of the year. With the large number of superstar talents moving to the Western Conference I think a third Sixer will sneak their way on to the Eastern Conference team.
4) Joel Embiid will play 70+ games this season.
This year will be the end of the Joel Embiid injury saga. There will still be games this year that the big man will get rested but I believe he will play at least 70 games this season. His number of games played has increased every season he has played. He played in 31 games in 2016 and 63 games last season. Embiid would have hit this mark last year if it had not been for that fluke injury in his collision with Markelle Fultz late in the season last year.
5.) The Sixers will win the Eastern Conference this year.
The best had to be saved for last. I believe that the Sixers have a very big chance to win the Eastern Conference this season. With LeBron James deciding to go to the Western Conference to join the Lakers the east is now wide open. In all reality it is just the Sixers and the Celtics in position to come out of the east this year. Even though the Raptors acquired Kawhi Leonard in the offseason they had to give up their best player to do it so they have not gotten any better. One thing that the Sixers have on the Celtics this season is that the Sixers unit is not going to miss a step because the group has not changed much. The Sixers’ starting lineup is going to be the same as it was last season while the Celtics’ starting lineup is going to drastically change. This Celtics team is going to have to start from scratch learning how to all play together with a healthy Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward. The Celtics are going to be tough competition this season but I believe that the Sixers will get their revenge this season and head to their first NBA finals since 2001.
[Photo Credits: ClutchPoints-The Athletic-PhillyVoice-Daily Express-Culture Kings]
Born and raised in Philadelphia I am 21 years old, currently attending Holy Family University studying a degree in sports management-marketing. I am a die hard Sixers fan but have love for all Philly sports teams.