Sixers face first real challenge with James Harden: Heat, Bulls, Nets

James Harden, Joel Embiid, Sixers (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
James Harden, Joel Embiid, Sixers (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

Winning has become a recurring theme for the Sixers. As the playoffs draw near, Philadelphia must be prepared to win against these next few Eastern Conference opponents.

The race to the 2022 NBA playoffs is soon to begin and teams are beginning to buckle down. Doc Rivers and the Sixers are in a prime position to make something special happen. Their three-game winning streak since acquiring James Harden has put the league on notice. While the Sixers focus on climbing up the Eastern Conference standings, they must first get past a set of tough matchups.

Sixers vs. Heat preview

  • Saturday, March 5 at FTX Arena

If the playoffs began today, the Miami Heat would hold the first seed in the Eastern Conference. Their 31-22 record is the best in the conference. Veteran leadership from Jimmy Butler and Kyle Lowry has taken the team to a new level this season. Making the extra pass is the key ingredient to Miami’s offensive success. According to, the Heat are ranked sixth in assist and third in team 3-point percentage. Defending the three-point line will be a point of emphasis when the Sixers travel to south beach.

Scoring efficient buckets is an important part of Miami’s play style. According to, the Heat have six players who shoot fifty percent from the floor or better. Tyler Herro’s role on the squad provides a boost of electricity for the teammates that share the floor with him. His twenty points per game have become a reliable source of points for Erik Spoelstra’s offense.