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Odds aren’t great the Sixers can make a 2021 NBA title run | Off the Dribble

The Sixers have the sixth best odds amongst Eastern Conference teams.

Joel Embiid is the key to the Sixers' chances of making an NBA title run.
Joel Embiid is the key to the Sixers' chances of making an NBA title run.Read moreYONG KIM / Staff Photographer

Happy Monday, folks.

The NBA season officially ended Sunday night when the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Miami Heat, 106-93, in Game 6 of the NBA Finals at Walt Disney World.

But that doesn’t mean our 76ers and NBA coverage is over.

You’re signed up to get this newsletter in your inbox every Monday. If you like what you’re reading, tell your friends it’s free to sign up here. I want to know what you think, what we should add, and what you want to read, so send me feedback by email or on Twitter @PompeyOnSixers. Thank you for reading.

— Keith Pompey (

Doc Rivers has his work cut out, according to oddsmakers

Adding Doc Rivers hasn’t exactly made the Sixers NBA championship or bust squad for 2021. At least not to oddsmakers at

The betting site released its opening odds for the 2021 season moments after the Los Angeles Lakers won their 17th NBA title.

At 34 to 1, the Sixers have the 12th-best odds to win next season’s title. The Lakers at 5-1 are favored to win their second consecutive title. The Sixers actually have the sixth-best odds amongst Eastern Conference teams, behind Milwaukee Bucks (9-1, third), Brooklyn Nets (13-1, fifth), Boston Celtics (15-1, sixth), Heat (16-1, seventh) and Toronto Raptors (19-1, eighth).

The Sixers are coming off a disappointing season after being a favorite to win the NBA title. They finished the regular season sixth in the conference standings before being swept by the Celtics in the opening round of the playoffs.

The 76ers fired Brett Brown on Aug. 24, the day after their season concluded and hired Rivers on Oct. 1. He’s expected to bring credibility and accountability back to the franchise.

While Rivers is a great coach, the Sixers may have to make some roster adjustments to be in contention for an NBA title.

Starting Five

  1. Former Sixers assistant coach Kevin Young to join Monty Williams in Phoenix. Young had been a Sixers assistant coach under Brett Brown during the last four seasons.

  2. Trading Al Horford for Buddy Hield would be a win-win for the Sixers and Kings. In Horford, the Kings would get a standout center to help end the team’s 14-season playoff drought. Hield could provide the Sixers consistent three-point shooting.

  3. In hiring Doc Rivers, Elton Brand and the Sixers front office are betting on themselves, writes David Murphy. Rivers is here to make the Sixers the best version of themselves. But is that a championship team?

  4. Marc Narducci’s Sixers offseason outlook: Assessing the reserves and their likelihood to return. Mike Scott, Zhaire Smith and Norvel Pelle are under contract, but whether they return next season remains to be seen.

  5. How much better does Doc Rivers make the Sixers? | Podcast. The addition of Rivers improves the 76ers' outlook for next season. The question is, will they be better than the Bucks, Raptors, Celtics, Heat and Nets?

Lakers title has Philly-area flavor

At least one person from the Philadelphia area won an NBA title for the second consecutive season.

This time, it is Lakers coach Frank Vogel, forward Markieff Morris and guard Dion Waiters rejoicing.

Last year, former Cardinal Dougherty High School and Villanova product Kyle Lowry helped the Toronto Raptors win their first NBA title.

This season, there were a combined five finalists from the Philly area on both teams. Vogel is from Wildwood Crest and went to Wildwood Catholic High School. He’s also a former Sixers assistant coach. Morris and Waiters are from Philly.

Morris is from North Philly and was a standout at Prep Charter. Waiters is from South Philly and stood out at Life Center Academy in Burlington.

Meanwhile, Heat player Derrick Jones Jr. is from Chester and played at Archbishop Carroll. Miami assistant coach Malik Allen was born in Willingboro and was a standout at Shawnee in Medford and Villanova before a 10-year NBA career.

Passing the Rock

Question: Do you believe the 76ers will play in front of a crowd at the Center during the 2021 season? — @Davejastrow on Twitter

Answer: What’s up, Dave? I hope you had a great weekend. Yes, I do believe the Sixers will play in front of a crowd at the Wells Fargo Center this upcoming season.

That’s why NBA commissioner Adam Silver said the season wouldn’t start until January at the earliest. I think March could be a more realistic start date due the league’s intent of getting fans in the stands. Let’s face it. The NBA is losing a lot of revenue by not playing in front of fans. It will do everything in its power to get fans back into arenas.