Philadelphia 76ers: 4 bold predictions for the rest of the season

With the Philadelphia 76ers now ready to go for a late-season charge after the All-Star break, here are four bold predictions for the team for the rest of the season.
76ers, Tyrese Maxey
76ers, Tyrese Maxey / Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
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4. Joel Embiid RETURNS, but the 76ers draw an unfavorable first-round matchup

Joel Embiid will miss more than a month still at the very minimum, and while the jury is predisposed on the negative as regards the reigning MVP’s return to play, it’s not too unreasonable to believe that the superstar will try to come back for the playoffs — a possibility that the 76ers have openly acknowledge and obviously prefer.

That being said, the 76ers’ season may not last much longer, as they could very well draw an unfavorable first-round matchup should they truly slide in the standings. If they go through the play-in wall to get to the playoffs, they will be matched up with either the Celtics or most likely the Cavaliers — the two undisputed best teams in the East since the calendar flipped.

Should Embiid return, it’s almost a guarantee that he will be on a very stringent minutes restriction, giving them a handicap against Boston’s parade of scorers and shooters, and Cleveland’s slew of physical big men and newfound perimeter firepower. Tough luck.

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