Sixers vs. Celtics: Previewing the opening game of the 2022-23 season

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Philadelphia 76ers head coach Doc Rivers talks with 76ers’ guard James Harden during the first half of a preseason NBA basketball game, Monday, Oct. 10, 2022, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane)

The long wait is finally over! The Philadelphia 76ers are playing the defending Eastern Conference Champion Boston Celtics on opening night. This historic rivalry has been going on for years and for hundreds of years. This will be the 460th regular season matchup all time between the Sixers and the Celtics. Currently, Boston leads the all time series, 264 games to 195.

Sixers vs. Celtics Game Info

When: Tuesday, October 17th, 2022 

Tipoff: 7:30 PM ET

Where: Boston, MA | TD Garden

How to watch: TNT, NBA TV

The Boston Celtics

This game has many incredible players up and down the roster. Both teams are seen as perennial contenders with extremely gifted athletes and management. The Celtics, led by Brad Stevens as an executive and Interim Head Coach Joe Mazzulla, are an excellent team.

While recent problems within the organization have caused head coach Ime Udoka to be suspended for a year, the Celtics are still a well rounded team who have made a few moves to improve their roster. They added injury prone, but uber talented guard Malcolm Brogdon via trade and Blake Griffin.

For the Celtics, they have a two headed monster leading their team. The first of the duo is clearly Jayson Tatum. Tatum is coming off of a season where he averaged 26.9 points per game on 45.3% from the field and 35.3% from deep. He also led the Boston Celtics to the NBA finals along with Jaylen Brown who averaged 23.6 points, 6.1 rebounds, and 3.5 assists per game. Brown was one of the most consistent members of the Celtics for the entirety of their playoff run.

The Philadelphia 76ers

The Sixers got busy this offseason, signing 3&D wings P.J. Tucker and Danuel House Jr. They also added 3&D guard De’Anthony Melton in a draft night trade that sent Danny Green and the 23rd pick to Memphis. They also signed a new backup center in former Sixth Man of the Year Montrezl Harrell.

For Philadelphia, the theme of the offseason was “depth” as they basically rebuilt their entire bench in one offseason. The Sixers have the star power to match up with any team in the league, but it has been the bench that has often held them back.

The Sixers have one of the best big threes in the NBA with guards James Harden, who averaged 22.0 points and 10.3 assists per game, and Tyrese Maxey, who averaged 17.5 points per game on 42.7% from deep, perfectly complimenting Sixers cornerstone Joel Embiid.

Even with the addition of James Harden and the emergence of Maxey, Joel Embiid played the best season of his career last year, averaging just over 30 points per game while finishing second in the MVP race for the second year in a row.

He finished the year averaging 30.6 points, 11.7 rebounds, and 4.2 assists per game on 49.9% from the field and 37.1% from deep. Joel holds a career 9-9 record against the Boston Celtics. He holds averages of 26.1 points, 12.1 rebounds, and 3.7 assists.

The Philadelphia 76ers face the Boston Celtics on October 18th, 2022 in Boston at 7:30 p.m. ET. They will play on TNT. This will be the first game for both teams as the Sixers try to put the league on notice. Philadelphia’s new look Sixers look great on paper, but will they prove to be the contenders that they see themselves as? Only time will tell.