Sixers Playoffs Philadelphia Paul Reed
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A big man reveals Sixers' playoff preference: Knicks over Celtics

Published April 20, 2024 at 4:04 PM

The Philadelphia 76ers narrowly defeated the Miami Heat in a tense play-in game, clinching a 105-104 victory and securing a first-round clash against the No. 2-seeded New York Knicks. Overcoming a 14-point deficit and a standout performance from Nicolas Batum, who scored 20 points off the bench, the Sixers are already engaging in pre-game banter ahead of their matchup with the Knicks.

''I feel like we ain't ducking no smoke, but yeah, we wanted the Knicks matchup of course,'' Reed said. ''That's the easier team, I guess. But it's going to be fun. We match up pretty well with them. They got a great guard; we got a great guard. We also got Joel, MVP.''

It's not unreasonable to suggest that the Celtics outshine the Knicks based on their regular season performance. However, Reed's assertion that the Knicks are the "easier team" might not sit well in New York, regardless of its accuracy. The Knicks secured the No. 2 seed in the East by defeating the Bulls on the final day of the regular season, indicating their intent to pursue a favorable first-round matchup rather than tanking.

As Reed hinted, the Sixers vs. Knicks matchup promises excitement, boasting notable talents like guards Jalen Brunson and Tyrese Maxey. The Knicks possess a formidable roster with various offensive threats, and their physicality in the postseason will be evident. Embiid's condition will be crucial, given his recent injury, as he remains a pivotal factor despite not being in top form.

Meanwhile, the Celtics are still awaiting their first-round opponent, which will be determined between the Heat and Bulls. Traditionally, Miami would be favored given their playoff track record, but Jimmy Butler's MCL injury potentially levels the playing field for the Bulls to secure the No. 8 seed. Although the Celtics are likely to be favored against either opponent, their specific matchup won't be confirmed until after Friday's game.

Source CBS Sports : Sixers wanted 'easier' Knicks as backup center Paul Reed tosses first barb of NBA playoffs
Source Masslive : Sixers wanted Knicks over Celtics in NBA Playoffs, big man says
April 20   |   1 answers
A big man reveals Sixers' playoff preference: Knicks over Celtics

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