Losing breeds frustration. Especially if you’re not used to it.
There’s a lot of frustration in Philadelphia right now.
The 76ers have lost four in a row, and that frustration is bubbling up in their locker room. After the third loss, there were calls for “accountability” and for players to look in the mirror. After James Harden dropped 44 to hand Philly another loss Friday, Joel Embiid said the losses are eating at him. And he was not alone, as reported by Noah Levick at NBC Sports Philadelphia.
“Losing four in a row sucks, and it doesn’t feel like we’re getting better,” Joel Embiid said. “It is frustrating…
“Well, if it’s not taking a toll on anybody … I care about winning,” Embiid said. “It’s taking a toll on me. All I care about is winning. It sucks. Gotta find a way. We gotta keep fighting.”
“We gotta win, pretty much,” Tobias Harris told reporters… “It’s an easy answer, but it’s the truth. We’ve just gotta figure out a way to come in and grind out a win, get our spirits up, get our vibe back and roll from there. I think winning solves everything, and we’ve gotta figure out a way to put a whole game together and be really sharp in our next game.”
All four losses have come on the road, where the Sixers are 7-12 on the season, and three were to quality teams (Miami, Indiana, Houston). In those four games, the Sixers have a bottom-10 offense and defense — they have been bad on both sides of the ball.
Philadelphia returns home Monday against Oklahoma City.
That home cooking may get the Sixers a 24th win on the season, but this losing streak has reignited questions about Philadelphia’s offensive issues. Particularly during a playoff series against a quality defense. In the Christmas Day win over the Bucks we saw how dangerous the 76ers can be, but they are far from consistent. Which means they are not building good habits that will carry them in tough playoff games.
There’s a lot of season left, every team faces adversity, and there’s plenty of time for Philadelphia to find itself. Tobias Harris is right, that needs to start with a win. Soon.