Tonight, well the Sixers game is already underway (21-18 us after 1), but they are opening the season at home against the Raptors. There are a lot of expectations for the club. With Elton Brand, this is the first time that Sixers will have a dominant power forward since Charles Barkley. Elton Brand will also help defend the paint with Samuel Dalembert.
The addition of Brand is great, but I'm not sure that alone is what will carry the Sixers farther in the postseason. Bench depth! The Sixers will have a very good rotation this season, which will allow for Iguodala, Miller, and Brand to get more rest to last for a good playoff run. Currently, their bench looks like this: Lou Williams, Willie Green, Theo Ratliff, Donyell Marshall, Kareem Rush, Reggie Evans, and the rookie Marreese Speights. The Sixers look to be 12 deep! Williams and Green could start for a number of teams. Ratliff, Marshall, and Evans all started in their younger days. Rush can come off the bench and shoot. Speights has looked good in the preseason and could find himself sliding up the depth chart. All of this without second-year forward Jason Smith.
Expect a big year from Thaddeus Young. So far, Young looks like a mid-round steal and he played out of position. Now, he can return back to the "3" position and defending guys smaller than him. He has also improved his jump shot which should help the Sixers shooting woes at time tremendously.
Lastly, the big question is if Iguodala's game will improve even more. Iguodala earned a huge deal this offseason. Will the pressure of his new deal affect his game? I doubt it ad I'd expect his game to improve even more with the addition of Elton Brand. Brand should be able to open up better looks for Miller, Iguodala, and Young.
Go out and watch the Sixers. They're coming off a playoff berth for the first time in a few years. They have done everything to improve this offseason Run with them!
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