While the real games don’t get underway for another two weeks, last night was a refreshing dose of NBA action that made me realize just how much I’ve missed basketball. For as down as I was on the NBA after the Warriors signed Demarcus Cousins, I’ve seemingly got over it and I’m back to being excited for the product. I know at the end of the season the Warriors are going to win it all. However, that doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy watching all the talented players the league has to offer over the course of the season. Especially, the young core that makes up the Sixers roster.
The young core was on full display last night against the Magic. You got a taste of what the Sixers can bring to the table this year. Embiid looks like a man that is ready to take his game to the next level. That is saying a lot considering he has averaged 22 points and 10 rebounds a game for his career. Through the first two preseason games, he just looks more in control and sure of himself on the court. He has been more efficient and knows exactly what he wants to do each time he gets the ball in his hands.
Joining Embiid, was the revamped shot of Markelle Fultz. He looked confident in his shot all night and he might have hit more jump shots yesterday than he did all of last season. JJ Redick looked comfortable coming off the bench and he will provide a big spark to the 2nd unit should the Sixers decide to start Fultz over him.
Ben Simmons is Ben Simmons. He is going to play within himself and if you thought he was just going to start chucking up 3’s this year you are very wrong. As the season goes on, I think you will see him shoot some more mid-range shots. However, I think that will be the extent of it. All in all, it was a nice showing in a game you can’t take too much away from. At the end of the day, it’s preseason. We won’t know how things play out until the games mean something. Even so, the encouraging signs from yesterday are something we can take with us and hopefully look forward to seeing opening night in Boston.