Believe it or not, 76ers jump into top 10 for ESPN’s NBA Power Rankings

(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /

The Philadelphia 76ers are finally being considered a threat in the Eastern Conference after jumping into the top 10 of ESPN’s recent NBA Power Rankings.

All of a sudden, the Philadelphia 76ers are on the rise when it comes to NBA Power Rankings across the league, and the recent one conducted by ESPN shows that. Even when Ben Simmons (elbow) was forced to miss Saturday’s game against the Orlando Magic, the Sixers still managed to put up 130 points thanks to other players like T.J. McConnell and J.J. Redick stepping it up.

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It wasn’t too long ago that Philadelphia lost twice in the same week to the Golden State Warriors, but in a way, those games could be viewed as wins since it proved the Sixers do in fact have what it takes to compete with some of the best teams in the NBA. And thanks to Brett Brown‘s squad recording five wins over their last six games, Philadelphia has finally worked their way into the top 10 for ESPN’s latest edition of NBA Power Rankings, sitting at No. 9.


"The 76ers scored a season-high 130 points against the Magic on Saturday, their most in a regulation game since April 1994. In the win, JJ Redick finished with eight 3-pointers, matching his season high. No other player has made eight 3-pointers in a game this season. — Jose De Leon"

Seeing the Sixers jump five spots after sitting at No. 14 last week is quite impressive, but this next week will be another tough challenge to see where this team stands, especially if Simmons continues to deal with his elbow injury. Not only does Philadelphia face a tough task on Monday night against LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers, but they will also face the Washington Wizards and Boston Celtics later in the week. Translation, the Sixers have three games this week against three of the most strongest contenders not just in the conference, but the entire league.

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To be the best, a team has to challenge the best, and these next few days could help the Sixers reach a whole new level of respect from other teams across the league. In a way, everybody knew the potential was certainly there with young talented players to work with in Simmons and Joel Embiid, but the argument can be made nobody expected them to be this good right away. Depending on how this week goes, it will be interesting to see if the Sixers can remain in the top 10, as they look to continue building their case for being one of the teams to beat in the Eastern Conference.