My, How Times Change
But the Philadelphia 76ers do have a realistic chance to end the season with a better record than the Dallas Mavericks. Currently the Sixers have 4 wins and 17 losses to the Mavericks 4 wins and 15 losses. Statistically, the Sixers are the better team compared to the Mavericks in points scored per game 97.4 to 91, rebounds per game 43.4 to 40.6, and assists per game 22.7 to 18.
Entering the 2016-17 season, most people expected the Mavericks to be much better than the Sixers. Todaysfastbreak.com’s power rankings done during the 2016 offseason had the Mavericks ranked 23rd and the Sixers ranked 30th. Three different writers in different Dallas Mavericks blogs predicted the Mavericks would finish the season with a winning record and likely make the playoffs. Akshay Mirchandani’s article proposed Mavericks best and worst case scenario and concluded the team would land over .500 winning percentage. Danny Webster’s predictions in this article projecting the 2016-17 Mavericks into the playoffs. Finally, Sam Casey projected the Mavericks to make the playoffs in this article about what five things Mavericks’ fans can expect this season.
While there will always be examples of projections, forecasts, and power rankings gone awry, the consensus of the Dallas Mavericks was uniform in optimism. That view was shared by a Mavericks’ front office caught completely unaware at the teams early struggles.