The 76ers have begun an initiative to help the so-called “little guy.” In a project titled “The Spirit of Small Business” that started opening night, the Sixers spotlight a small local business across the team’s digital and social platforms for each game, home and away.

Sixers president Chris Heck said the team reaches 6 million people through its social media platforms, including Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

“With the small businesses struggling during the pandemic, we wanted to see how we could make a difference and be effective,” Heck said in a phone interview.

The small business makes a video that includes the 76ers’ opponent for its selected game and a promotion. The 76ers share the video with the business tagged on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and to drive fans to support that business.

Each business that is being spotlighted isn’t announced until the day of the game.

The first business spotlighted, during the season opener, was Down North Pizza on Lehigh Avenue.

Any small business that would like to be considered for the project can apply at

“It is a chance for us to connect with the community which is an easy one, but it is so necessary to protect the small-business operators,” Heck said. “We think they bring something so unique, particularly in Philadelphia, that we need to look out for them and support them.”