The Sixers started off the final month of the decade with a bang, humiliating the Jazz 103-94 at home on Monday night. Don’t let the final score fool you, however, as this game was embarrassing for Utah.
Ben Simmons and Al Horford had solid outings and the squad led by 15-20 points for a majority of the game, thus certainly making up for their poor performance against the Jazz last month. This feels like a completely different team since that rough stretch in early November. They’ve won 8 of 9 and have some light match-ups coming up before the battle against Milwaukee at home on Christmas Day. There are some great games to go see live in Philly this month in addition to the Christmas Day day game, including Toronto, Dallas, and another rematch with Jimmy Butler. You will only have so many opportunities to see Luka Doncic live so if you have a chance to go see the Mavs game on December 20th, you gotta go. Anyways, here are five MUST WATCH Sixers games you don’t want to miss this month.
December 8th vs. Toronto
The team battled it out up North last month but was unable to come out on top. Philly’s last match-up with Toronto of course included Joel Emiid’s abysmal 0 point game. Since then, Joel has been on a tear averaging 27 points per game over his last 4 games and getting back in his groove. Toronto – led by Siakam – have moved on from Kawhi Leonard and shown they can still be a competitive team in the East. Few people saw them being 15-4 at this point but they have beaten expectations. This should be a good one and certainly a redemption game for Embiid.
— Philadelphia 76ers (@sixers) November 28, 2019
December 12th in Boston
The Sixers have always seemed to struggle against the Celtics, especially when having to play in Boston. Things may just be changing now that Al Horford has jumped ship, thus taking away Boston’s #1 defender against Embiid. That said, Boston has been on fire after losing in Philly on Opening Night. The team seems borderline unstoppable when Gordon Hayward is playing well.
It won’t be easy, considering this contest was one of two games out of the five I had the Sixers losing in my season prediction. This still factors to be a tough match-up, especially considering the fact that the Sixers will be playing in 5 of 7 days over this stretch.
December 20th vs. Dallas
If there is a game of the month from a spectator’s perspective, this is the one. Luke Doncic doesn’t come to town often and seeing the phenom at this stage in his career is a unique opportunity.
Dallas is currently tied for 4th in the Western Conference thanks to the duo of Porzingis and Luka being healthy and dominant. I honestly don’t know how the Sixers will match up against this Dallas team but they can only do better than the Eagles (sorry). The key thing to watch is how the Sixers defend Luka. Will it be Simmons or Richardson. Both are elite perimeter defenders, but will they be enough to slow him down?
Decamber 25th vs. Milwaukee
This is the first match-up of the season between the Sixers and last season’s top seed in the Eastern Conference. Milwaukee is another team that just looks unstoppable. Giannis Antetokounmpo was named Eastern Conference Player of the Week for last week after averaging 34.8 points, 11.3 rebounds, and 4 assists a game. Milwaukee is fully loaded and with Kawhi out of the picture, it is virtually Milwaukee’s conference to lose if they secure home court.
Securing home court is something I’ve said the Sixers must get done. The team is 10-0 at home this year but has struggled to go 5-6 on the road. If they really want to make a title run it starts with getting that little advantage. This game will set a match for who will be the favorite to take the Eastern Conference and counts as a Christmas gift in my book.
People aren’t realizing how much every game matters. Some of #SixersTwitter are downplaying these losses to mediocre teams but we have to win EVERY game against sub .500 teams.
Sixers Home Record: 10-0
Sixers Away Record: 5-6
If we want to make a title run, we NEED home court!
— Sixers Nation (15-6) (@sixxersnation) December 3, 2019
December 28th at Miami
Jimmy Butler will have the chance to make up for the thrashing he and the Heat took in the squad’s last match-up with Philly. The former Sixer made headlines over the weekend after criticizing his former teammates, saying that they “didn’t work as hard as he did” and didn’t have a “winning motive”.
This is an odd line of attack from Butler, considering he finished the last Sixers-Heat game with only 11 points, a game in which the heat trailed by 35 in the third quarter. This is the other game on the list that I predict the team to lose. They’ll be coming off of a tough game at home against Milwaukee and having to play in Miami is no cakewalk. Even if Butler takes another L, it’s doubtful he shuts up with the trash talking. It’s becoming more and more obvious he is building a rivalry with the team and more overall the city, which is par for the course with everywhere Butler plays.
I guess he’s jealous that he didn’t get the boat?