The Sixers will have to find a way to stop the Hawks’ twin towers in center Al Horford and forward Paul Millsap as well as point guard Jeff Teague.
Evan Turner, Thaddeus Young, Spencer Hawes, Michael Carter-Williams and Tony Wroten will have to bring their “A” game for a team of potential All-Stars and the return of former Sixers Kyle Korver and Elton Brand.
The Hawks have an entire starting lineup scoring double-digits as well as have the league’s second leading passer in Teague and seventh best shot blocker in Horford. The Sixers will have to combat them with Hawes who has identical blocks per game and the sixth best passer in Carter-Williams.
The Sixers rank sixth in points per game and the Hawks rank slightly lower at 103; however, the Sixers allow a league worst 108.2 points per game while the Hawks allow 101.3. The Hawks’ point differential is plus 1.7 whereas the Sixers allow negative 2.8 so Philadelphia must focus on their defense if they are to beat the Hawks.
As long as they cut their turnovers and step up their defense they’ll beat a playoff team like the Hawks, but the perimeter defense needs work. The Sixers allowed Houston Rockets point guard Jeremy Lin to go 9-for-15 from three-point range Wednesday night, Danny Green to go 5-for-7 from the three in the loss to the San Antonio Spurs, and Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving to go 5-for-12 behind the arc as well.
The Sixers could continue their success against another difficult team playing at least .500 ball.