The Philadelphia 76ers are sitting pretty with the third-best record in the Eastern Conference so far, but more than their win-loss card, the team has clearly been one of the most impressive clubs early in the season from the eye test alone.
That being said, the 76ers cannot rest on their laurels and be content with their current level of play. The East alone is jampacked up top, and the race for the higher seeds could very well come down to a razor-thin margin when it’s all said and done. And with many teams appearing poised for breakouts of their own, snagging optimal playoff positioning is key to making a long run in the postseason.
Why the next 10 games will give the Philadelphia 76ers a chance to assert dominance in the standings
According to Power Rankings Guru, the 76ers have had the 11th toughest schedule so far, but will have the third easiest slate of games moving forward. While it’s still too early to harp on the latter, the next 10 games will give the team the best chance to get a lot of steam in the standings.
Here’s how the next 10 games will look like for Philadelphia:
- 11/29 @ New Orleans
- 12/01 @ Boston
- 12/06 @ Washington
- 12/08 vs Atlanta
- 12/11 vs Washington
- 12/13 @ Detroit
- 12/15 vs Detroit
- 12/16 @ Charlotte
- 12/18 vs Chicago
- 12/20 vs Minnesota
During that stretch, the 76ers will have seven outings against teams with losing records, while New Orleans is currently a .500 team. Boston and Minnesota are leading their respective conferences and are the only challenging matchups for Philadelphia.
Really, anything south of eight wins over the next 10 would be a disappointment for the 76ers. Atlanta is a bipolar collective. Washington, whom Philly will face twice, is currently a hot mess. Ditto for Detroit and their erratic youth movement. Charlotte could be without LaMelo Ball due to a major ankle injury. Chicago could blow up anytime soon.
Put simply, the 76ers have to capitalize on this easy slate of games and try to snag the peak position in the standings as soon as possible. That way, they can put pressure on the teams currently within their range as the wins pile up and the losses stop coming frequently.