Sixers and Eastern Conference powers get tangled in standings

Joel Embiid, Sixers, Jimmy Butler, Heat (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Joel Embiid, Sixers, Jimmy Butler, Heat (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

According to, five teams are less than four games back from stealing first-place from the Chicago Bulls — including the Sixers, who sit just one game back.

Clutch performances from Zach Lavine and DeMar DeRozan have made Chicago a tough team to beat. Joel Embiid and Doc Rivers’ have done their best to keep up with Chicago’s fierce duo. Hard work has propelled the team to second place in the Eastern Conference.

As the regular season continues, fans who enjoy watching basketball will expect to see shifts in the league’s standings. Here are a few teams to watch as the second half of the NBA season approaches.

Miami’s Jimmy Butler has it out for Sixers

FTX Arena’s location on Biscayne Boulevard makes for an amazing family getaway. The Miami Heat call this home. Erik Spoelstra and his team have refused to let the beauty of their setting distract them. Their victories this season are the result of an experienced roster. Jimmy Butler and Tyler Herro are responsible for the team’s success. Both players have upheld a twenty points per game or more average while creating opportunities for their teammates to get involved. Butler’s 6.4 average assist is the second-most on the team.

While teams zero in on Miami’s primary scorers, players from other parts of the roster have answered the call. Bam Adebayo and Kyle Lowry are instrumental pieces to the Heat’s winning formula. Lowry’s 13.4 points and 8.4 assist average have given the Miami offense more control of their possessions. If a teammate misses an open shot, the rebounding ability of Adebayo keeps the possession alive. His 10 rebounds per game average have kept the Heat from fizzling out.

Staying above water has been a difficult task for Miami as of late. Their previous three-game losing streak has cost them extra leverage in the Eastern Conference standings. Matchups against the Charlotte Hornets, Brooklyn Nets, and Dallas Mavericks will show how prepared Miami is for the remainder of the season.