The Philadelphia 76ers haven’t had quite the start to the campaign that they had been hoping for. The team that had finished atop the Eastern Conference during the regular season last year haven’t been able to find the same success. The 76ers are still dealing with the drama surrounding Ben Simmons and are merely competing for a playoff spot as it stands.
However, despite their woes there have been some bright spots to the season, including veteran guard Seth Curry. The 31-year-old was acquired by Philadelphia last offseason in a deal that saw Josh Richardson head to the Dallas Mavericks. While Curry didn’t have a poor season last year, he has looked significantly more comfortable during the current campaign.
“He’s comfortable coming off picks,” said 76ers head coach Doc Rivers, via USA Today. “He’s comfortable in pick-and-rolls, I don’t think last year, Seth hadn’t been in many pick-and-rolls, and we start throwing him in a ton. He may run that more than he’s coming off of picks now. I think that’s what he worked on all summer and he’s comfortable with it.”
Without Simmons in the lineup, Curry has had an increased role with the 76ers this season and has had the ball in his hands much more often. He has worked well with Embiid to build chemistry and it has been noticeable on the court.
“I always feel comfortable when we’re playing good basketball, sharing the ball,” said Curry, via USA Today. “More pick-and-rolls, the better I can get involved, try to make plays off of Joel as much as possible, and just try to be aggressive.”
The two have looked incredible together at times and had Embiid not missed several weeks of action due to COVID-19, the 76ers could be fighting for top spot in the Eastern Conference. Teams have had difficulties trying to defend the partnership between Curry and Embiid, which will likely only continue to get better.
“We talk about certain things we can do out there,” Curry told members of the media of his partnership with Embiid. “Both of us are smart players, talented guys who know how to play off each other so it’s just a matter of being in good positions to play with each other. We’ve done it for a year and a half now, so we kind of know what each guy does and where each guy likes the ball and try to stick to it and find different wrinkles that the defense can give us to take advantage of.”
Fans of the 76ers are just hoping the partnership will come through when the games really matter in the playoffs. Even though Philadelphia had a fantastic regular season, they were ultimately eliminated in the second round of the playoffs by the Atlanta Hawks. They haven’t found a way past the second round since they reached the final in 2001 and are desperate to get back. It’ll be interesting to see how the relationship between the two stars continues to develop, especially as Simmons remains out of the lineup.
“I think he comes in from last year and he saw what he did during the regular season, then he saw he took a step during the playoffs, and most players bring that back,” Rivers said. “They’re comfortable. They know what we’re gonna ask; Seth knows what we’re calling for him. He knows exactly what we’re doing now, and so he’s comfortable.”