Five must-see games on Sixers' 2015-16 schedule
The Sixers will enter the 2015-16 season continuing their march toward respectability, by beginning year three of what is becoming a prolonged rebuilding process.
That doesn't mean, however, that they won't be exciting to watch. Nerlens Noel will have frontcourt help in the form of rookie Jahlil Okafor, and a variety of athletic and talented guards and wing players will make for some exciting moments, even if the win total is likely to remain on the low side once again.
Here's a look at five must-see games on the Philadelphia schedule for the upcoming season.
Nov. 2 vs. Cleveland Cavaliers: LeBron James comes to town with what should be a fully-loaded Cavaliers roster, and that means it's an early-season look at the defending Eastern Conference champions who will be even more formidable while playing at full strength.
Dec. 1 vs. L.A. Lakers: This is likely to be Kobe Bryant's final NBA season, so it's a chance to see one of the game's all-time greats (and a local Philly product) for perhaps the last time. There's also some recent history between the two teams, as the Lakers selected D'Angelo Russell with the second overall pick in the draft, which allowed Okafor to fall to the Sixers. The big man from Duke will likely want to show L.A. what it will be missing.
Jan. 4 vs. Minnesota Timberwolves: Karl-Anthony Towns was the No. 1 pick in this summer's draft, and he and Okafor were widely regarded as the two best bigs on the board. It'll be a chance to see them go head-to-head, in what should be an extremely entertaining matchup.
Jan. 30 vs. Golden State Warriors: The Warriors represent the NBA's gold standard at the moment as defending champions, and they built their team with an unorthodox style that saw them dominate opponents on both ends of the floor all season long. This is where the Sixers are trying to get to, and while a test against the team that's most recently figured things out may be painful from the Philly side, it's a necessary step in the team's ever-evolving process.
April 10 vs. Milwaukee Bucks: Michael Carter-Williams won Rookie of the Year two seasons ago with the Sixers, but was dealt at the trade deadline last year for a variety of reasons. This is Philadelphia's last home game of the year, so the team will get a good look at Carter-Williams after a third full season of development, and can judge at that point whether or not trading him away was indeed the right decision.