Philadelphia 76ers offseason and how the Pistons will match up


The Philadelphia 76ers have been building long and hard to get a true contender. They may be on the brink of that status. How will the Detroit Pistons fare?

We may be Detroit Pistons’ fans, but we all remember what was going on in Philadelphia during the thick of the 2016-17 NBA season. Joel Embiid was averaging 20 points and grabbing just shy of 8 boards a night in his first year getting on the hardwood. However, the hype in Philly quickly perished once he was deemed out for the season with a torn meniscus. And from here it was back to the lottery and ready to build more through the draft.

Philadelphia got to work fast, making a smart deal with Boston to secure the #1 pick of the 2017 NBA draft. The pick was used to pick up Markelle Fultz, their hopeful cornerstone point guard. Philly’s night didn’t end in the lottery however, as the raked in four more draft picks. These guys are most likely to stay off the roster until further development overseas.

At the brink of free agency, Bryan Colangelo raked in some great veteran players. The club was able to make a one-year $23 milllon deal with J.J. Redick . Last season, Redick was a dead-eye from downtown. He converted on 43 percent of his three-point attempts, good enough for fifth in the league, while making the top 10 in threes made. The second vet they picked up was Amir Johnson, who has kept up respectable career averages of 7.5 points and 5.7 rebounds per game. Amir was picked up on a one-year $11 million deal.

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The expectations for Philadelphia next season are widely optimistic. A large consensus of people see the 76ers making a splash in the postseason come next April. With that being said, how will the Detroit Pistons fare with this conference opponent?

The Pistons play the 76ers four times this season. The home games are at the bookends of the season, while they play at Wells Fargo Arena in the heart of the season. Giving Fultz and Simmons some time to adjust and get used to the full strength of the NBA, I give the Detroit Pistons the favorable matchup in game one. Philly can take both game two and three barring any major injuries in the roster. But Detroit will be in a final push for a better playoff seed come early April. This leads me to believe in the energy of the team will surge them to a nailbiting win to stay above .500.

To break down the starting matchups, I find we have the advantage in two positions. I will take Avery’s perimeter defense over Redick’s shooting stroke anyday.  And Tobias Harris will continue to lead the way for the Detroit Pistons in offense to outplay Dario Saric. The losing matchups come at the point, and small forward. I think Markelle Fultz will be able to wear down Reggie Jackson’s energy and find holes in his defense. Stanley Johnson is too inconsistent offensively to give Ben Simmons trouble.

However, the one matchup I can’t make a definite call on has to be at center. Two strong big men battling it out in the paint, Joel Embiid and Andre Drummond. Last season, I would take Embiid without batting an eye. But with Drummond’s recent surgery, he may prove to be a true source of energy for the Pistons. He proved to have plenty of gas in the tank during his entertaining play in the NBA Africa game in early August. This newfound sense of urgency can give Andre what it takes to stop the seven-footer in Philly.

Next: 10 things I like and don't like about the Pistons summer

The only way we will know truly, is by watching the games themselves when they happen. Trust the Bad Boys, and Trust the Process.