First in the Eastern Conference, that’s where the Sixers sit and they don’t plan on giving up that seat anytime soon. The team has a chance to pad their lead once again against the lowly Detroit Pistons.
After a too close for comfort victory on Saturday night, the Sixers will have to tighten things up in order to ensure the win tonight. One big question mark before the game is the status of Joel Embiid.
Sixers/Pistons Injury Report
Derrick Rose – Out (knee)
Killian Hayes – Out (hip)
The Pistons will once again be without both Derrick Rose and Killian Hayes causing them to run their offense without a traditional point guard. They may have a non-traditional player fill in for that role as one of their stars will be returning to a court.
Expect Blake Griffin back after a night’s rest Saturday night. Griffin could slide into a point forward role for a spell as their only other ball handler will be Delon Wright.
Joel Embiid – Questionable (back)
Mike Scott – Out (knee)
Vincent Poirier – Out (COVID-19 protocols)
Obviously, the biggest name here is Joel Embiid. The MVP candidate is tentatively questionable with a “back” injury. Fans shouldn’t be too worried about Embiid’s back as it seems to be the team’s go-to when giving him a night of rest.
The biggest worry is just whether or not the team is able to pull off a win without their leader. The Sixers are 0-3 on the season without Joel Embiid.
Everyone will need to step up if he’s not ready to go but the biggest improvement needs to come from the bench.
Get The Bench Going
The biggest disappointment in Saturday night’s game was the bench who only managed to score 23 points against a porous Pistons’ defense. That just won’t cut in in this game.
The Sixers’ starters are the main attraction there’s no denying that. A quality game though from Shake Milton, Tyrese Maxey, and Matisse Thybulle take the pressure off those starters. Ideally, it’s a light night for the starters against the cellar-dwelling Pistons.
Shake Milton in particular is due for a bounce-back game. The Sixth Man of the Year candidate has only scored 14 points in his past two games. That’s a far cry from his play earlier in the season.
It’s a lot of pressure to put on the Sixers’ young bench but whether or not they’re ready, they’ll have to be. If the team is to have any type of meaningful playoff run either this bench unit will have to perform better or the team will have to look outside the current roster.
Tip-off is at 7:00 PM EST for the Sixers. You can catch the game either on NBC Sports Philadelphia or NBA League Pass. You can also listen live as always at 97.5 The Fanatic FM.
If Joel Embiid does in-fact miss tonight’s game, it could prove to be much more of a challenge than originally thought.
Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire