Philadelphia 76ers: Record predictions for the 2019-20 season

Joel Embiid | Philadelphia 76ers (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)
Joel Embiid | Philadelphia 76ers (Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

Anthony DiRenzo

This Sixers’ offseason was as interesting as any team in this league. Following a heart wrenching Game 7 loss to the Toronto Raptors and Kawhi Leonard, GM Elton Brand and Coach Brett Brown took a step back in an effort to make this the top squad in the East.

Jimmy Butler seemed like the No. 1 priority with fans urging the front office to “run it back” but EB sided with depth over committing to a five-year supermax. Even though some fans were disappointed, Brand pulled of a great move by exchanging Butler for Josh Richardson, a pure shooting guard still on his rookie extension.

He may not be the “superstar” that JB is, but Richardson has overperformed for his age, and will be settling into his prime with Joel and Ben by his side. He will perfectly complement this offense as his off-ball shooting should play a big role in the offensive gameplan.

By not overpaying for Butler, the front office was able to lock up Al Horford, a veteran NBA center who can give this young core the leadership it needs. Stealing Horford from the Celtics was one of the most significant moves of this hectic offseason.

The Sixers also locked up forward Tobias Harris, who will now have a bigger role to impact the game, as he struggled to get fully involved with too many mouths to feed on offense last season.

All of these moves on top of the depth of the 76ers’ bench with impact players like Mike Scott, rookie Matisse Thybulle, James Ennis, and Zhaire Smith, make it seem as though the 76ers are finally ready to be a top contender in the eastern conference. Expect a one or two-seed and a 59-23 record, and if all goes as planned, Ben and Embiid will both have a shot at the coveted MVP award.

Final prediction: 59-23