Elton Brand Believes Talent Will Trump Chemistry in the Playoffs
What does it take to win in the NBA Playoffs? The Philadelphia 76ers have a small idea, but they haven't figured it all out just yet. Last season, a young Sixers team went to battle against an experienced, yet, inferior Miami Heat squad. As expected, the Sixers came out on top as they won the series 4-1.
The next round against the Boston Celtics issued a tougher matchup, but the Sixers were hot heading into the second round. However, clicking with chemistry only got them so far as they cooled down and took a 4-1 series loss themselves. The Sixers packed up and went home as they looked ahead to a brighter future in 2019.
Fast forward to now, and the Sixers are back in the first round of the playoffs, facing a lower seed. Except this time around, the Sixers aren't viewed as a team that's coming in hot. Instead, they are ice-cold and a bit rusty. But that doesn't concern them. Not when their General Manager Elton Brand put together a battle-tested roster with one of the better starting lineups on paper.
Over the course of the season, Brand did all that he could to bring stars into Philly. Being that the NBA is a 'super-team or bust' type of league, you need stars. Dario Saric and Robert Covington were good - but they weren't stars. Jimmy Butler? He's a star closer. Tobias Harris? He's a star shooter.
Brand did a considerable job re-building the roster while remaining in 'win-now' mode. But now the upgrades need to show better results in the postseason. According to Sixers' Reporter Brian Seltzer, Brand believes that star quality will trump chemistry in the playoffs.
"Brand spent 17 season in the NBA, and went on a handful of post-season runs. He believes that the combination of playoff-tested players and talent produces the right recipe for success. "Star players win in the playoffs," he said "and that's what we're built for." the 40-year old thinks the team currently has more weapons in its offensive arsenal than this time a year ago. In addition to Simmons’ paint-attacking prowess and gifted passing, Embiid’s other-worldly versatility, and Redick’s lethal touch from long-range, the Sixers now boast a pair of all-league caliber wing scorers in Jimmy Butler and Tobias Harris, both of whom have proven themselves capable of closing out games."
The Sixers have had close to two months to put this all together and form a stable chemistry with the new and improved starting five. However, injury setbacks to multiple players made it difficult to get everybody out on the floor together consistently. Are the Sixers able to just flip the switch and start winning based off of talent alone? That remains to be seen. But if the longtime veteran player-turned-General Manager believes so, then you have to undoubtedly, trust the process.
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