Sixers travel to A-Town to face the new look Hawks

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Philadelphia 76ers’ Joel Embiid dribbles during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Milwaukee Bucks, Thursday, Oct. 20, 2022, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

The Philadelphia 76ers square off against the Atlanta Hawks tonight at State Farm Arena. It will be the first game between the two teams since last season. The last time the Sixers and Hawks played was December 23rd, 2021.

In that game, Trae Young did not play, and James Harden was yet to be traded to the Sixers. Philly lost that game 98-96, where the Hawks had six players score in double figures, and Joel Embiid led the Sixers with 23 points.

Game Info

When: Thursday, November 10, 2022

Tipoff: 7:30 pm EST

Where: Atlanta, GA | State Farm Arena

How to watch: NBC Sports Philadelphia, NBA TV

What to watch in Sixers vs. Hawks

In this matchup, though, the Sixers take on a team on the rise with a new-look backcourt. With two talented guards in Trae Young and DeJounte Murray, the Sixers will have their hands full on the perimeter. Overall, the Hawks are a top-10 offensive team, scoring an average of 116 points per game. Defensively, they are in the middle of the pack, allowing about 113 points per game to opposing teams.

Unfortunately for the Hawks, they are coming off a loss at home to the Utah Jazz, 125-199. Although Trae Young scored 22 points versus the Jazz, he shot only 10-28 from the field. DeJounte Murray led Atlanta in this offensive slugfest, but his 26 points were not enough to overmatch the best team in the Western Conference. 

Coming off a loss to a team that is supposed to not have playoff aspirations, the Hawks will have to deal with a Sixers team that seems to have a refreshed and motivated Joel Embiid. That assignment will go to Clint Capela, who is 5-5 against Embiid head-to-head, per Stathead. Although Embiid outscores Capela on average 21 PPG to 13 PPG in those matchups, Atlanta’s big man has caused Embiid to shoot under 50 percent from the field. The Sixers’ All-Star center also grabs less rebounds when facing Capela, averaging only 8.5 RPG.

As the Sixers adjust to life without James Harden for several weeks due to a foot injury, there are a few bright spots for Philly fans to consider. Joel Embiid is back and seems healthier, along with De’Anthony Melton. In addition, Georges Niang has strung together some games that show how deadly he can be from beyond the arc. In his last six matchups, Niang is shooting 54 percent from long range, averaging 6.2 attempts per game. Against the Suns on Monday, he made seven 3-pointers, helping the Sixers take down the Suns at the Wells Fargo Center.

Will Doc Rivers favor Paul Reed again in this Hawks matchup, like in the Suns win? Will Matisse Thybulle get more minutes to help slow down the Atlanta backcourt? Can Embiid and Maxey carry the offensive load versus the high-octane Hawks? Tonight, we will find out.

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