6. Philadelphia 76ers
With the shortened season, teams that haven’t had many roster changes should have an advantage, and the 76ers return their whole nine-man rotation from last season. They also have a good amount of youth which is also a major plus in a shortened season.
Philly’s youth is going to have to raise their play this season if they are going to make some noise in the playoffs, most notably point guard Jrue Holiday and wing Evan Turner. Turner is the key to their success in my opinion, after an average year last season, he has to turn the corner this year in order for Philly to compete with the elite teams in the East.
Another issue that Philly is going to have to address is outside shooting. Their only long-range threat last season was Jodie Meeks, allowing teams to sag into the paint on defense. If Turner and Holiday can improve their three point shooting it will open up driving lanes and the paint for the post players.
The Sixers best line-up last season seemed to be going small with Thaddeus Young at PF and Brand at C. That option should be very beneficial this season, since small, young, and fast is likely to be a winning strategy in this season’s grind of a schedule.