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Pistons vs 76ers preview: Detroit gets its first look at Joel Embiid

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In now his fourth season, Embiid will finally suit up for the first time against the Pistons.

NBA: Boston Celtics at Philadelphia 76ers Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The preseason’s sexy pick to grab one of the eight playoff spots in the Eastern Conference revolved around the Philadelphia 76ers (let the DBB record show I was not on-board). Philly’s record after the first week of play, however, might indicate they’re a bit further away from consistently competing than most believed. Tough losses at Washington and against Boston before an Embiid-less blowout in Toronto has The Process at 0-3. It’s not yet November so there’s much room for growth but maybe the plodding start to the season might force Philly faithful to pump the breaks on this year’s expectations.

Game Vitals

When: October 23rd at 7 p.m. EST
Where: Little Caesars Arena, Detroit, MI
Watch: Fox Sports Detroit (League Pass)

Analysis

As a basketball fan, I’m excited to watch Joel Embiid play his first game against the Pistons even though his talented presence makes Detroit’s job that much tougher.

Early on, Embiid has found success in facing up on the post up:

Whether it’s a pull-up jumper or putting the ball on the floor, he’s is fully capable of operating either. It’s going to be up to Andre Drummond to defend Embiid’s bucket-getting ability and his defensive history suggests—if he must— Dre would rather bang with traditional bigs than dealing with non paint duties:

Embiid can also step beyond the arc too; in 2016-17 he shot nearly 37 percent in just over three attempts per game. Yeah, he’s a handful.

****

In their first three games, the Pistons have done a great job of creating turnovers (or “turns”, Matt Shepard?) which plays into one the 76ers’ obvious flaws. Young teams—such as Philadelphia— tend to turn the the ball over at an alarming rate and Philly is no exception as they’re averaging nearly 18 turnovers per game. Detroit should aim to capitalize on these gifts and get as many easy looks as possible on the run.

****

Projected Lineup

Philadelphia

Jerryd Bayless, J.J. Redick, Joel Embiid, Robert Covington, Ben Simmons

Detroit

Reggie Jackson, Avery Bradley, Andre Drummond, Stanley Johnson Tobias Harris

Stay tuned to the GameThread for updated lineups and injuries.

Prediction

No visiting opponent has figured out how to win in Little Caesars Arena and I don’t see that changing tonight.

76ers 100
Pistons 104