It might be a preseason game, but Tuesday can’t come soon enough for people looking to get a glimpse at the new-look 76ers.
What are the areas the Sixers will emphasize during the 7:30 p.m. matchup against the Boston Celtics at the Wells Fargo Center? And what are the areas in which the team is just going to wing it?
“That is a good question. I am not sure really if I have the answer,” Doc Rivers said following Sunday’s practice. “I know we have stuff in, but I don’t know if we know it enough to execute it great. But it is in. So I think it is a little bit of both.”
The Sixers will run more pick-and-rolls under Rivers compared to the past seven seasons with Brett Brown. Among some of thethings they will also run is sort of a motion offense with every position interchangeable besides the five spot.
“Having a lot of stuff in is good for this group because we have to get it in so they can slowly learn it,” Rivers said. “I think they are starting to identify, at least offensively where the sweet spots are in our motion offense. And that is a good thing. And now we have to try to convert those possessions.”
The Sixers’ second and final preseason game will in Indianapolis against the Pacers on Friday (6 p.m.). Their regular-season opener is at home on Dec. 23 against the Washington Wizards.
Returning just seven players, the Sixers don’t have a lot of time to gel and find a rhythm. As a result, they will play their key guys a lot of minutes for at least the first half of Tuesday’s game. That will enable the players and coaching staff to get a feel for the rotation.
It appears getting the offense up to speed is more of a priority.
“We are not going to be as sharp as we want to be Tuesday night,” Seth Curry, one of the new additions, said. That should be certain on the offensive end. As long as we are getting better as the season goes along and we are sharp come the end of the season and playoff time.”
The Sixers have a big lineup and several versatile and smart defenders. So they are further along on defense. They need to continue to work, offensively.
“I think our defense is pretty far along,” Curry said. “We have a lot of talent on the defensive end.”
As Curry emphasized, “It’s a day-by-day process on the offensive end.”