The Boston Celtics are set to face the Philadelphia 76ers in the first round of the NBA Playoffs, with the best-of-seven series tipping off Monday.
Fortunately for the Celtics, this matchup is much less daunting with 76ers star Ben Simmons out for the rest of the year after needing surgery on his left knee. Still, Joel Embiid and Al Horford will be no small task to guard, especially given the trouble Boston has faced defending bigs, especially in the NBA bubble.
Coach Brad Stevens on Sunday described to reporters what his team will be up against.
“Embiid is one of the best bigs in the league,” Stevens said via video conference. “Horford is tremendous as well. (Tobias) Harris is a big wing. And go down the line, they have big long guards.
“Simmons is an outstanding player, but without him now, they’re posting those guys more and they’ve got four shooters around Embiid all the time. It makes it extremely difficult to play against.”
Horford, a former Celtic, is looking forward to the matchup, and promised for a “fun” series.
Tip-off for Game 1 set for Monday evening at 6:30 p.m. ET.