Philadelphia started off the season with an 84-75 win over Denver in their home opener before dropping their following two games to the Knicks. Tonight they’ll be in New Orleans for a nationally-televised match up against the young Hornets.
The Sixers seemed to have been on the same page until they met the Knicks last weekend. Their 16-point loss on Sunday included a barrage of unguarded three-pointers by New York’s J.R. Smith, Carmelo Anthony and Steve Novak. Jason Kidd also joined in the three-point party, hitting 2-for-5 from beyond the arc. The following day included the same script, as the Knicks cruised to a 110-88 victory at the Wells Fargo Center due to Philly’s poor defense. New York jacked 32 three-pointers and made 13 of them during their most recent win over Philadelphia.
Tonight the Sixers hope to wipe off the two previous losses with a strong outing against the Hornets, who will be without their star rookies Anthony Davis and Austin Rivers. Philadelphia continues to ride without Andrew Bynum, who’s yet to show any signs of coming back anytime soon. On Sunday, the Sixers lost Jason Richardson to an ankle injury that will continue to keep him sidelined for tonight’s game.
Nick Young has been filling Richardson’s role on offense, but has yet to catch a fire on offense for Philadelphia. Instead, the Sixers have been steadily relying on the leadership of Jrue Holiday. The 22-year-old point is currently leading the Sixers with his 19.3 points and 8.7 assists per game.
Sixers’ coach Doug Collins will look to switch around the rotations tonight. In the last game Collins had Kwame Brown as the starting center, but it looks like tonight could potentially give way for Spencer Hawes to begin this game for the Sixers. Look for Collins to continually mix around his lineups tonight in the front court, with Lavoy Allen also grabbing plenty of playing time.
After two dismal losses, the Sixers are searching for a groove on both sides of the court. Swingmen such as Evan Turner and Nick Young need to start producing on offense if Philadelphia wants to find some wins without Andrew Bynum.