The Top 10 reasons to support the Philadelphia 76ers these NBA playoffs

Publish Date
Wednesday, 3 May 2023, 11:25AM

By Marty Jones

Philadelphia is the greatest sports town in the world

Home of iconic and championship winning franchises such as the Eagles (NFL), Phillies (MLB), Sixers (NBA), Flyers (NHL) and Union (MLS), Philadelphia is arguably the greatest sports town in the US if not the world.

With so many successful teams, the sports culture in the city sees a level of dedication like no other. Losses take days, if not months, for people to recover from and the results directly tie to the city’s psyche.

And wins, well, wins see the city and its celebrations go to another level, quite literally.

Fans go to new heights to celebrate and officials need to now grease their poles to contain fans' enthusiasm from climbing lamp posts when their teams win.

And wins, well, wins see the city and its celebrations go to another level, quite literally.

Fans go to new heights to celebrate and officials need to now grease their poles to contain fans' enthusiasm from climbing lamp posts when their teams win.

The Sixers are one of the most storied teams in the history of the NBA

The Sixers are the oldest franchise in the league, who boast multiple NBA championships, and have seen Hall of Fame players such as Wilt Chamberlain, Julius ‘Dr J’ Erving, Charles Barkley, and Allen Iverson don the team's red and blue uniforms.

The trajectory of the team over the past ten years has been an especially fascinating ride…

"The Process" is the greatest sports story in modern NBA history

Stuck in mediocrity in 2013 (and kicking off the night Steven Adams joined the NBA) the leadership of new manager Sam Hinkie took a strategy of being bad to become good—of trading away anything of current value to create future value, with the goal of becoming regular championship contenders. The strategy was nicknamed ‘The Process’. The ups and (mainly) downs over this past ten-year stretch have made for a story as captivating and crazy as that great Brad Pitt film 'Moneyball'.

The Sixers have the MVP

In 2014 the team drafted Joel Embiid, a Cameroonian who, despite only starting to play basketball at age 15, was touted as a future star. After sitting multiple seasons due to injuries, then dealing with the loss of his brother, many declared he would never step foot on a court. Embiid debuted in 2016 and has since become one of the top players in the league. The 7-foot titan has for the past few years been a top-three finalist for the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award and has finally won it this year. Embiid has now won back-to-back scoring titles and in doing so became the first center to win consecutive titles since the 1970s.

The Sixers have the greatest team-based NBA podcast

Look, there are a million basketball pods, and they can’t all be as good as The ACC’s Benchwarmers. But, the Sixers podcast The Rights to Ricky Sanchez is a show like no other.

Having started about ten years ago, at the beginning of the Process era, hosts Spike Eskin and Mike Levin, plus others (Hi CJ/AU/Abbie), have created one of the most engaging and enduring sports podcasts around.

From putting up billboards to honour Sam Hinkie, to instigating retweet Armageddon to celebrate a win against its foes, to having their producer kidnapped by a knife wielding puppet, the Ricky is special and like no other.

They don’t have to worry about Ben Simmons no more

In 2016, the team drafted highly discussed Australian player Ben Simmons. He was the top prospect coming out of college and was claimed by many to be the second coming of LeBron James. Over a number of seasons Simmons seemingly refused to improve on his widely acknowledged weaknesses (shooting the basketball!!!) which began significantly hampering the Sixers' chance at a championship. Simmons then stopped playing for the team, and demanded to be traded, in what became an unprecedented standoff, before being eventually sent to New Zealander Sean Mark’s Brooklyn Nets for future Hall of Famer James Harden.

They have Basketball Ball Paul Reed
The Sixers have been notoriously short handed at the back up center position in recent years, playing corpse after corpse in the minutes Embiid is on the bench, costing them dearly. However, over the past twelve months a certain Paul Reed aka BBall Paul, has proven himself to be one of the greatest offensive rebounders in Sixers history. Between his on court heroics and offcourt hoodie selling escapades, he has become a fan favourite and one of the easiest guys to root for. I mean come on, the guy’s nickname is literally basketball.

And they have the dunk contest champion

Look, the dunk contest has sucked for years. But this year the Sixers called up internet phenom Mac McClung from the G-League to deliver a series of dunks that rocked the internet and, according to Shaq and Magic, saved the dunk contest!

This is the year!

The past season has seen the ups and downs of the Sixers level out. The team has been overseen by league legend Daryl Morey, who has steadied the ship and focused on building around Embiid, including adding Harden.

This has been reflected in the results. This season the team won their most games in a regular season since 2001, the year the team was last in the Finals.

Embiid and Harden have accomplished a feat the NBA has not seen for 40 years — teammates leading the league in both scoring and assists in the same season.

They have the MVP, the G-League finals MVP, the Dunk Contest Champion and a guy who’s name is basketball.

With a first round win against the Brooklyn Nets behind them, their first series sweep since 1991, and a historic game 1 upset versus the highly favoured Celtics, the team is presenting itself as a true contender and the underdog you wanna root for.

So get on board and enjoy the wild ride that is the Sixers!

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