Thursday, January 26, 2017

Go ahead and say it: The Sixers could make the playoffs

With all due respect to Jim Mora, Sixers fans are thinking playoffs.

If you don't
get the Mora reference, Google it.

PLAYOFFS? Are you kidding me?

Actually, no I'm not.

Yes, this might have been ludicrous a month ago.

But that was before Joel Embiid took the town by storm. Now they're even winning when he's not in the lineup.

They did it again last night, winning on the road against a good Milwaukee Bucks team. The Sixers won despite forfeiting an early double-digit lead, topping the Bucks, 114-109.

It was the team's fifth win in the last six games. And it marks back-to-back wins with Embiid not on the floor. The rookie standout is still nursing a banged-up knee, while also refraining from back-to-back games. When he's in the game, his minutes remain restricted. That has not stopped him from almost single-handedly turning around the fortunes of Brett Brown's team. Now it looks like the rest of the lineup is buying in. That is particularly true on the defensive side of the ball, which was again key to last night's win.

Once looking up at every team in the NBA, there are now a cluster of teams with worse records than the Sixers.

They are just four and a half games out of the final playoff spot, with more than three dozen games to play in the marathon NBA season.

They now stand at 17-27. And all four teams that stand between them and that final playoff spot sports a record below .500.

Playoffs? PLAYOFFS? Yeah, why not.

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