By Tommy Matthews
The Sixers are in Portland tonight after running off three straight wins against the Jazz, Lakers and Clippers.
They are in third place in the East, a half-game behind Milwaukee and 4 1/2-games behind first-place Boston.
But Sixers fans are bed-wetters, pearl-clutchers:
Joel Embiid isn’t in shape!
James Harden is too old!
Doc Rivers has got to go!
Meanwhile, they have the league’s fourth-best defense, 10th-best offense and fifth-best overall net rating.
This despite the fact that Embiid, Harden and Tyrese Maxey all missed some significant time with injury issues.
Embiid has been playing at an MVP-level again, and Harden has been excellent as well, both as a scorer and a facilitator.
The Sixers are deeper than they have been in recent years, and as long as they can stay healthy they’ll have a chance to make a real run in the East this season.