Healthy Sixers Look To Overcome Hobbled Hawks

NBA: APR 09 76ers at Pelicans
NEW ORLEANS, LA – APR 09: New Orleans Pelicans center Willy Hernangomez (9) fouls Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (21) during a NBA game between the New Orleans Pelicans and the Philadelphia 76ers at Smoothie King Center in New Orleans, LA on Apr 09, 2021. (Photo by Stephen Lew/Icon Sportswire)

The gang is back together for the Sixers as they look to overcome an Atlanta Hawks team that will be without their star, Trae Young.

As the Sixers prepare for the final stretch of the regular season, the team is looking about as healthy as they have all year, and the timing couldn’t be better. The team has a chance to make up some serious ground in the race for the top seed in the Eastern Conference.

Sixers drawsting

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A Weak Remaining Schedule

The Sixers boast the second-weakest schedule remaining only ahead of the Memphis Grizzlies. While the numbers place the team second, they also do say that two of the Sixers’ four toughest opponents over the rest of the season are the Hawks and… well, the Hawks again.

Both matchups are this week, and Trae Young will miss at least the first game and likely the second. Now is the time to strike. Injuries are an unfortunate part of the game, a part which the Sixers are all too familiar.

A high percentage of Philly’s losses came, in part, because of their stars missing time. The Sixers find themselves in the opposite situation for a change, and they have to take full advantage. What Joel Embiid and CO. can’t afford to do is play down to their competition as they often seem to.

Musts To Ensure A Sixers Victory

Now is not the time to relax; this is the time to grind your way back to the top. It starts with Head Coach Doc Rivers instilling a winning mentality. No more “scheduled losses.” Then Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons have to set the tone defensively.

In the seven games the Atlanta Hawks have played without Trae Young, they are averaging only 98 points. If the Sixers can bring the same defensive pressure they did against the Oklahoma City Thunder; then this game will be just as easy.