Five years removed from 10 winning seasons, the Philadelphia 76ers find themselves atop the Eastern Conference.
Friday’s 122-97 victory over the Orlando Magic made Philadelphia the No. 1 seed in the East in 20 years, coach Doc Rivers said the team should not tolerate.
“It’s an achievement, I don’t want to ignore it. But I tell us to have fun, I don’t want to call it a moment, I tell them to enjoy the second because it’s not what we want, but it’s part of what you get on your way to what you want. Said Rivers. “I think for this team from a young age, having a home pitch is very important, it’s nice to have it, so we should be proud of this team.”;
It was a long road for the Sixers to the top, with the “The Process” era finally coming full circle to sit atop the east, what Joel Embiid reflected.
“It started when the Sixers finished seasons 10-62,” Embiid said. “I think that’s where it started, and then we only improved.”
With the No. 1 seed in hand, the Sixers gained a homefield advantage through the Eastern Conference finals and came with the added benefit of avoiding the Brooklyn Nets and Milwaukee Bucks in the first two rounds.
“It means what we said we wanted to do at the start of the season was to get that number 1 seed,” said Ben Simmons. “Obviously there is an advantage on the home pitch. But besides that, we have to get ready for the playoffs, we have one more game to end and the real work begins, we put ourselves in a good position. But in the end we Want to win the championship “
A home court advantage can be a big deal for the Sixers; They hold the best home record in the East at 27-7 versus the road record 20-16.
“Being a top seed helps a lot from a home advantage,” Embiid said. “It helps a lot, of course, because we dominate the home, we rarely lose here … so it means a lot to have a seed. No. 1 variety “
The last 76ers to hold a leading position in the East, led by Allen Iverson and coached by Larry Brown, went into the NBA finals, losing to the Los Angeles Lakers in five games. History, however, has not been kind to the No. 1 seed from the East since then.In 10 of the past 12 seasons, the top seed at the Eastern Conference failed to reach the NBA finals.
At this time, the Sixers’ opening-round opponents still need to be considered as teams playing across four teams – the Charlotte Hornets, Indiana Pacers, Washington Wizards and the Boston Celtics – will face off against each other to end Nos 7 and 8 seed Simmon. Said it was not important.
“I don’t care who we play, that’s the point of having a No. 1 seed,” he said. “You feel like the best team in your meeting, so you should play with anyone, if we’re scared we are. Should not be in this position. “