Philadelphia 76ers coach Doc Rivers says the NBA is in a healthy position as he prepares for a stern test against Brooklyn.
The 76ers and the Nets face each other for the first time since the blockbuster trade between them on Thursday.
While Ben Simmons won’t play, the narrative has added an extra spice to the game. Reports suggest that there will be increased security around the stadium.
Philadelphia is 5 – 0 in games James Harden and Joel Embiid have started together. However, Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving will be their biggest challenge yet.
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“Kevin Durant is elite,” Doc Rivers said. “Kyrie is elite. When you give them the ball, they’re really tough to guard. There’s no secrets to that. We’ve got some elite guys here, too, and there’s probably no secrets to that. Both teams are probably still trying to figure out stuff. They’ve had guys in and out all year. Us, too, with the trade.
“So it’s tough to have a real measure after five, either way. But it’s still good to play them. It’s good to play all these teams. I think a little bit at a time, but you learn a little bit at a time.
“I don’t like how, let’s say, this rivalry was started,” Rivers said of the Simmons trade. “I’ll pass on all that, let me put it that way. But I love when there’s rivalries. I love when there’s teams that are in the same conference that want to play each other and go after each other. That’s all good.”
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“The league is in a great place right now,” Doc Rivers said.
“It really is. I mean, you look at the East, there’s five, six teams that legitimately can win the East. In the West, the same thing. So if you’re over at the league, if you’re Adam Silver right now, you’re loving the league, you really are. Because competition is good, right? That’s what we want. We want a good, hard game, with competition. And that’s a great thing, and I think we have it in our league right now.”